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Our story...

Delicious food with an authentic story

Cindy’s Kitchen UK was founded by Cindy Young; born in a small town called Surakarta in Central Java, Indonesia with a passion for sensational food, bold flavours and food created with heart.

Indonesia which has a population of approx. 270 million people, is the largest archipelago in the world with over 17,000 islands. Although not all of them are inhabited, the diversity of people, culture, and different food is unbelievable. One of the best things about living in Jakarta is that it’s the melting pot, the collision of all cultures and foods from around the country. 

The Jakarta food scene relies heavily on street food. Indonesians savour the delicious meals offered by street vendors day and night for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Street food is a quick meal sold by a vendor with a push cart, basket, at a stall, or possibly at a store where customers can see the preparation of food clearly. 

Indonesian cuisine often demonstrates complex flavour, acquired from the mix of ingredients and spices (bumbu) mixture. Indonesian dishes have rich flavours; most often described as savory, hot and spicy, and also combination of basic tastes such as sweet, salty, sour and bitter.

In Indonesia, one dish can have dozens of versions across the country.. For example, the Balinese satay lilit uses coconut milk and lemongrass. Satay from Padang (West Sumatra) on the other hand, is smothered in a curry-like sauce.

Rice is a staple food in the Indonesian diet. Most Indonesians have had a long-established habit of eating rice three times a day — for breakfast, lunch and supper.

Almost every dish comes with rice on the side – even carb-loaded meals like noodles or potatoes!

 

Indonesians also use rice to make various desserts, such as tasty

black glutinous rice pudding and sweet sticky rice dumpling (kue lupis).

There are dozens of sambal (spicy condiment) recipes known in Indonesia. It’s like wine pairing with meals, you’ll learn that dishes in Indonesia go with a certain sambal to make it complete. The same goes with kerupuk (crackers). Indonesians would be happy with really simple food as long as there is sambal and kerupuk to accompany it.

“ My first experience around food came from watching my mum cook. My mum was a caterer and she has a real passion for food. Even now she makes the best homecooked meals. My mum in the Javanese tradition was very keen to pass on her recipes along with her cooking tips and tricks. This is something that I will pass onto my daughter.

 

When I moved to the UK in 2012, I saw that there was a lack of Indonesian food in restaurants and takeaways. People didn’t know enough about Indonesian food other than its iconic dishes such as satay, rendang (caramelized beef curry), and nasi goreng (fried rice). I wanted to introduce  Indonesian food  to my friends and neighbour’s in the UK, and in 2016, I started Cindy’s Kitchen UK. 

Indonesians love their food spicy and the spiciness level of the dishes varies from one province to another. Chillies can be found in most of the spice mixture ingredients for every dish. I personally love a very spicy dish even by Indonesian standards, but not everyone can take the heat. So, on each of the dish I offer, there’s an indicator of heat rating (which has been toned down to adjust to British taste), 1 to 10, with 10 being the hottest, so people are aware on the spiciness level of the dish. I want people to still be able to enjoy tasty and unique spicy food with rich layers of flavours, not just a numb tongue! 

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“You must try Cindy’s food - it’s delicious! Fresh, home cooked, and I never want the meal to end as it’s always so tasty. I’ve tried several different dishes and have loved every one. I’m a very happy customer. :-)”

- Helen S.

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