Juicy Vegan Indonesian Curry

Sambal Goreng (pronounce some-ball go-rang) is a Javanese dish made of sambal (spicy chili condiment) that is stir fried with other herbs and spices for long minutes before coconut milk is added to it.

It is a stew curry like Thai panang or red curry.  The traditional ingredients are not vegetarian (except sometimes we use potato)  such as chicken livers, gizzards, etc.  Items that are kind of gross to vegetarians.  Sometimes people use shrimps and fish also.  The Javanese also use terasi or shrimp paste.

Therefore, a vegetarian has to be careful in eating Indonesian curry that has no meat in it since shrimp paste may still be used.

I veganized it without using shrimp paste or meat by using potato, carrots, green beans, and edamame.

I also use miso to replace the shrimp paste.  Tofu and tempeh can also be added to it.  This time I incorporated Beyond Meat just because I just want to try cooking with Beyond Meat.  I love to experiment and try new things.  I am fine with eating tofu and tempeh but I love to venture to other options that are available to vegans.

The result?

Satiating, nourishing, and brimming with energizing and nutrient-rich ingredients. This is a real power curry – a one-pan wonder!

Vegan Indonesian Sambal Goreng (Curry)

vegan indonesian curry

Serves 6-8


  • 12 oz. Beyond Meat, Extra Firm Tofu, or Tempeh, cut into cubes

Note:  if using tofu or tempeh, I usually, bake them in the oven until brown and crispy first

  • 2 cups shelled edamame (frozen and then thawed)
  • 2 medium tomatoes (fresh), diced into cubes
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen green beans(thawed)
  • 1 1/2 cups diced carrots  (peeled and diced)
  • 2 cups diced potatoes (peeled and diced)
  • 1-2 tsp. salt
  • 2-3 brown sugar or palm sugar
  • 1-2 tbps. Miso
  • 1 cup thick coconut milk
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 cups tamarind water or a few squeezes of lime, optional

Note: soak 1 inch tamarind paste in warm water

  • Oil for stir frying sambal

Spice paste ingredients:

  • 6 shallot cloves, peeled
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 5 candlenuts
  • 3 large dried New Mexico chili

Note:  Soak the dried chili in the 1-2 cups warm water for 10 minutes, remove stem and seeds, drained and reserve the soaking water

  • 3 fresh Thai Chili (green serrano chili), use less for less spicy

Fresh herbs:

  • 2-3 slices fresh ginger
  • 2-3 slices fresh galanga or laos
  • 2 stalks fresh lemongrass (use the white part only), pound them and then slice to 2 inches long
  • 3-4 fresh kaffir lime leaves


  • Fried Shallots or Brambang goring
  • Chips (veggie or garlic chips) or garlic krupuk


Healthiest Vegan Recipes

Put all spice paste ingredients into a food processor, mini chopper, or blender.  Grind until it becomes a paste.  Add a little bit of chili soaking water to make it easier to grind.

Heat a large pot in medium high temperature.  Add 1-2 tablespoons of oil.  Add the spice paste.  Stir fry the sambal or spice paste for about 10 minutes.  Add a little bit more of chili soaking water if it sticks to the wok or pot.

Add all of the fresh herbs ingredients.  Then, stir to combine.

Add tofu, tempeh, or Beyond Meat, diced carrots, diced tomatoes, and diced potatoes.  Add miso.

Add 1 cup vegetable broth and more of the chili soaking water until it barely covers the ingredients but not too soupy.

Simmer and stir to combine with the spice paste.  Add salt, brown sugar or palm sugar, and the coriander.  Continue simmering and stir frequently about 20 minutes or until carrots and potatoes are done but still firm.  The tomatoes should disintegrate some at this point.

Add coconut milk, edamame pods, and green beans.  Taste and add more salt, sugar, and the tamarind water or a few squeezes of lime, if using.   Combine and simmer for another 5-10 minutes.

This dish is better served the next day when all the spices and herbs are absorbed to the ingredients.  Before serving, remove all the fresh herbs ingredients out of the curry.

Serve on top of steamed rice, sprinkle with fried shallots, and eat with chips on the side.

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