Sunday, September 6, 2009

Soto Kudus (Chicken/ Buffalo stew from Kudus)

Kudus is a small city in Central Java. One of the most popular dish from that city is the Soto Kudus (stew). There are 2 choices of meat - chicken or buffalo. Probably you might question why buffalo, not beef? Well, the information that I heard is that most people in Kudus don't eat beef because they don't believe in killing cows.

This Soto Kudus restaurant is serving only the chicken stew. You probably will find that the chicken meat is not tender, a bit harder to bite because it's free range chicken which we called it as ayam kampung (trans: ayam = chicken; kampung = village).

I like eating Soto Kudus because it's consider light stew, savory and also flavorful because of the spices.
tukang soto kudus

Soto Kudus Recipe
Source: Fatmah B.

1 kg free range chicken
2 litters water
2 tsp salt
3 Indonesian bay leaves/laurel
200 gr bean sprout (only pour with hot water and then drain)
2 tbsp leek/ green onion (chopped)
2 tbsp fried shallots
1 tbsp fried garlic

Ground ingredients:
10 pcs shallots
5 pcs garlic
5 pcs nutmeg
2 cm tumeric
2 cm ginger
1 tbsp white pepper
½ tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
1 tsp MSG (optional, I prefer not to use it)

Chili sauce ingredients:
10 pcs small red chili
50 ml sweet soy bean sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp fried garlic

- Boil water, put the chicken and salt. Let it boil again, then simmer it until becomes broth.
- Take out the chicken, fry in hot oil until golden. Then use hands to tear the chicken into small pieces.
- Fry the ground ingredients with vegetable oil until fragrance, add the Indonesian bay leaves then pour into the chicken broth.

How to prepare the Soto Kudus:

Put the bean sprout on the little bowl first.
Follow with the pieces of torn chicken.

And then, put fried garlic and then fried shallots

On top, put the chopped green onion,
and then pour the chicken broth in the bowl.

Soto Kudus

Usually, when you eat at a Soto Kudus restaurant, they will also provide a plate of quail eggs on skewers, chicken gizzards on skewers, scrambled eggs and croquette as a side dish.

I always love to add the fresh lime juice by squeezing the lime directly to the Soto Kudus.

The perfect companion of Soto Kudus is a plate of warm white rice :)


  1. Wow, that stew looks amazing! I love all the accompaniments as well. Do I really have to choose between chicken or buffalo? I'd like to have both! :-)

  2. palidor: You have eaten buffalo meat before? :)

  3. I have never eaten buffalo before and I'm not sure whether I would have liked it so if I had to choose I would have picked the chicken soto kudus :D The stew looks very good. Never had this kind of stew before but would love to give it a try!

  4. angele: Actually, I don't think I've ever eaten buffalo in my life, but then, according to many people, buffalo meat tasted good although it's harder than beef :)

  5. I have never had buffalo before...
    and it has been long since I last ate quail eggs.

    Angie's Recipes

  6. angie's recipe: quails eggs are yummy :)

  7. I am love all kinds of food. I would try this with chicken or buffalo. I have never shied away from giving something a try. The pictures and presentation of the food are excellent. blessings

  8. This is a really interesting recipe and your tutorial is wonderful. As to my choices - I'd skip breakfast and lunch and then have the chicken and the buffalo :-).

  9. QMM: Thank your for your nice words, QMM :)

    mary: Skip b'fast & lunch for this dish? But it's only a small bowl, need to order at least 2 bowls then... ;)

  10. Gorgeous pictures! This stew looks hearty and delicious!

  11. Hmmm I am drooling over my keyboard looking at the Soto..

    I have always known that Soto Kudus is made with chicken. Thus, I learn something new today.... Soto Kudus Kerbau.

    I made Soto Padang a copule of weeks ago which as far as I know, using beef.. but it could have been with buffalo meat since the original rendang is made with buffalo meat.

    Have you been to the Soto Padang shop at Pintu Air? If not, please visit and show us your fantastic photographs (ngemis nih...)

  12. Mm, this looks like a great dish! I love the quail eggs on skewers too!

  13. Great setup, now may I join you for lunch and or dinner? Cheers Selby

  14. I think i will like the free range chicken stew, it's meat should be are more muscled and fragrant.

  15. WOW! one Soto Kudus and a plate of rice for me..

  16. Another type of Indonesian dish that I get to know. :)

  17. The Soto Kudus look really yummy, love steamed rice.

  18. traditional, authentic , exotic !
    none like it ! only in Indonesia !

  19. I love all the spices and layers of flavor in this stew, it sound fantastic!

  20. faith: thanks for your compliment, Faith! :)

    tuty: Hehehe.. hope that your keyboard still can be used!*j/k* :D
    Well, yes, here in Jakarta, it's more common for the vendors to sell Soto Kudus with chicken.
    Oh.. the Soto Padang in Pintu Air? Never been there but I've heard it many times, in fact, one of my mom's friend is a big fan of it. Okiedokie, I'll give a try... btw, I still owe you "taoge goreng" post, haven't crossed any vendor yet :)

    mica: *hi5* sometimes, never can't get enough with quail eggs, hehehe...

    houstonwok: hi there.. long time no see! Glad to see you are back blogging. Sure... just fly to Jakarta ;)

  21. foodbin: you are so right about the free range chicken, they really got "muscles", hehehe...

    peachkins: Okeee... it's coming to your table :)

    little inbox: glad to share it :)

    DA: It's really yummy indeed :)

  22. BSG: hahaha... well done... said ;)

    kerstin: It's delicious ;)

  23. the whole combination sounds good. hearty, wholesome, and very traditional.

    the croquette is bergedil?

  24. j2kfm: Whoaaa.. you really summarized it pretty well :) Yes, croquette is perkedel.

  25. MMMMMM,...Selba! The food looks stunning & your pictures are great!

    I just gave you an award!! Come over @ my latest post & pick it up!!

  26. I enjoy Indonesian meals with the free range chicken. Surprisingly used in so many dishes. Makes the meal much more tasty.

  27. I prefer to take the soto kudus just like that rather that go with the rice. It looks like our Malaysian mamak chicken soup

  28. YUM! This looks great. I like that you put the fresh lime on it.

  29. I would defintly love the food here truly exciting!

  30. Oh this stew looks so delicious, I would totally go for the buffalo! I love its mild taste and tender texture, plus it's so much healthier and lower in fat!

  31. sophie: thank you for your compliments, Sophie :) And also thank you so much for the award, it's very thoughful of you.

    worldwindows: Free range chickens are much healthier to be consumed because they are not being shot with those hormons.

    email2me: Have to take at least 5 bowls if you are not eating it with rice, hehehe..

  32. FwLT: With the fresh lime is tasted refreshing and add more nice fragrance :)

    BBO: You gotta visit Indonesia then ;)

    marta: The buffalo meat sounds great. Is it easy to find buffalo meat in your area?

  33. Is it tastes like soto ayam? but from the looks this is more milder tastes right?

  34. Buffalo stew? Never hear before. Is it common to use buffalo meat in cooking? How does it taste like as compared to chicken?

  35. You had me at fried garlic and shallots!

    P.S. i love fried gizzards too!

  36. This looks so good. I would like both the chicken and the buffalo. Are buffalo and bison the same thing? I see bison burgers at some of our local restaurants. It's a lean meat.

  37. FP: Yes, it is similar to Soto Ayam :)

    FFT: Some parts in Indonesia like to consume buffalo meat. Uhmm... tell you the truth, I've never eaten buffalo meat :D But as Marta said in her comment, it's mild taste and tender texture.

    monica: *hi5* fried gizzard is wonderful, even for snack :)

    MCK: No, buffalo are different than bison although buffalo is the popular name often used to describe North American bison. They do look similar but still different. The buffalo here in Indonesia are the water buffalo which the farmer usually used them to plough rice field.

  38. Selby, I haven't had real buffalo meat. I mean, I tried a buffalo hot dog, but I don't think that gave me a true taste. I wanna try buffalo for real!

  39. palidor: Buffalo hot dog? hehehe... sounds yummy, but what kind of meat is it? beef?

  40. The stew sounds awesome! Have you had the buffalo one? We eat American bison here all the time, I know it's different from buffalo in Europe but is the taste mostly similar?

  41. I always frowned when my dad brought me to a Soto Kudus restaurant, but now that it's so unreachable, the soto looks indeed quite tempting...;-) Our neighbour's grass does look indeed greener...;)

  42. 5 SF: No, I haven't had buffalo but I think I had American bison before when I was in the States :)

    C-G: You frowned? Why? Hahaha... I bet there's a story behind it ;) Oh yes! You are so right that our neighbor's grass looks greener than ours.. I wish I could be in Germany right now! LOL

  43. hi Selby,
    Thanks its good to be back,if you only knew how demanding life has been, I literally didn't have time to go grocery shopping. However we should be back to normal now, I would love to visit Jakarta one day!

  44. ooohhh, the soto looks really good. it's been raining here and i think a bowl of warm, soto kudus will do me good. i like mine pedas as well! :)

  45. houstonwok: That's great that it's going to be normal again :) Just let me know whenever you come to Jakarta, I'll be glad to bring you around for hunting food!

    nic: It's been raining in SG, how nice! It's so darn hot down here in Jakarta, hehehe...

  46. Because I always wanted a bowl of mie ayam, that's why ;D! I was extremely choosy when I was young!


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