Empal Gentong - Cirebon Beef Soup

4.9 from 10 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson




Prep Time: 30 mins

Cook Time: 1 hour 30 mins

Total Time: 2 hours

Serves: 8


  • 4 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 2 lemongrass (Indonesian: sereh), bruised
  • 2 cloves (Indonesian: cengkeh)
  • 1 kilogram beef brisket (Indonesian: sandung lamur) or other beef cuts for stew, bite sizes
  • 1500 ml (6 cup) beef stock/water
  • 200 ml (~ 1/2 can) coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoon sweet soy sauce (Indonesian: kecap manis)
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves (Indonesian: daun jeruk)
  • Grind the following into spice paste
  • 100 gram shallot (Indonesian: bawang merah)
  • 4 cloves garlic (Indonesian: bawang putih)
  • 5 candlenut (Indonesian: kemiri)
  • 1 fresh turmeric (Indonesian: kunyit), or 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg (Indonesian: pala)
  • For the garnishes
  • thinly sliced scallions
  • thinly sliced chives (Indonesian: kucai)
  • chili flakes (Indonesian: cabe kering tumbuk)
  • deep-fried shallot (Indonesian: bawang goreng)
  • lime juice


  1. Heat cooking oil in a soup pot and stir fry spice paste, lemongrass, and cloves until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add the beef into the pot, mix well until the meat is no longer pink.
  3. Pour the beef stock (or water) and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the meat is fully cooked and tender.
  4. Add the coconut milk, kecap manis (sweet soy sauce), and kaffir lime leaves. Stir and bring to a boil again. Once it boils, immediately turn off the heat.
  5. Add scallions, deep-fried shallot, and lime juice prior to serving. Serve empal gentong with steamed white rice, or ketupat/rice cakes, and sambal rebus.

Another great recipe by https://dailycookingquest.com.