Lontong Cap Go Meh
|Lontong Cap Go Meh|
|Place of origin||Indonesia|
|Creator||Chinese Indonesians in Java|
|Main ingredients||Lontong topped with opor ayam, sayur lodeh, sambal goreng ati, pindang telur, koya powder, sambal, and krupuk|
|16x16px Cookbook:Lontong Cap Go Meh 16x16px Lontong Cap Go Meh|
Lontong Cap Go Meh is a Peranakan Chinese Indonesian take on traditional Indonesian dishes, more precisely Javanese cuisine. It is lontong served with rich opor ayam, sayur lodeh, sambal goreng ati (beef liver in sambal), acar, telur pindang (hard boiled marble egg), abon (beef floss), and koya powder (mixture of soy and dried shrimp powder), sambal, and kerupuk (prawn crackers). Lontong Cap Go Meh usually consumed by Chinese Indonesian community during Cap go meh celebration.
Chinese cuisine influences on Indonesian cuisine is evident in Indonesian take on Chinese dishes, such as mie goreng, lumpia, bakso and siomay. However the culinary influences is also took another way around. Vice versa, peranakan Chinese Indonesian also been influenced by native Indonesian cuisine. It is believed that lontong cap go meh is a peranakan Chinese Indonesian take on traditional Indonesian dishes.
Early Chinese immigrants in Indonesia settled in northern coastal cities of Java, such as Semarang, Pekalongan, Lasem, Tuban and Surabaya, as early as Majapahit period. During that time only male Chinese settled in Java and they intermarried with local Javanese women and create a Javanese-Chinese Peranakan culture. These early Chinese immigrants has become accustomed to the cooking of their Javanese wives. To celebrate Chinese New Year, during Cap go meh, peranakan of Java replaced the traditional yuanxiao (rice ball) with local lontong accompanied with array of Javanese dishes such as opor ayam and sambal goreng ati (spicy beef liver). It is believed that the dish reflect the assimilation among Chinese immigrants and local Javanese community. It is believed that lontong cap go meh conceived good fortune symbols; the thick rice cake is considered richer compared to thin watery bubur (rice congee) which is often associated as food of poors. The elongated form of lontong also symbolize longevity. While eggs symbolize good fortune and yellowish turmeric-coconut milk broth represents gold and fortune.
Lontong Cap Go Meh was strictly a Peranakan-Javanese phenomena; peranakans in Malay Peninsula, Sumatra and Borneo are not familiar with this dish. It is commonly associated with Imlek traditions of Chinese Indonesians in Javan cities, especially Semarang. Since Betawi people (native Jakartans) was also heavily influenced by Chinese Indonesian peranakan culture, Lontong Cap Go Meh is also considered as one of Betawi cuisine.
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