Daily Cooking Quest

easy Indonesian recipes

Lodeh Terong dan Tahu - Eggplant and Tofu in Coconut Milk

Lodeh is a popular Javanese side dish of vegetables cooked in coconut milk. There is no fixed rule regarding the kind of vegetables to be used in a lodeh, but popular choices include eggplant, chayote, tofu, tempeh, snake beans, young jackfruit, and even stink bean. You can do a super complete lodeh with all the suggested choices, or you can pick a couple from the list and do a simpler version like what I do in this recipe. ♥

Lodeh Terong dan Tahu - Eggplant and Tofu in Coconut Milk

Lodeh Terong dan Tahu - Eggplant and Tofu in Coconut Milk

Lodeh is actually a very close cousin to another popular Javanese vegetable dish, namely sayur asem. The list of ingredients are very similar, but sayur asem uses different spices for its soup base. If I have to make a comparison between the two using Thai cuisine as reference, I would say lodeh is tom kha gai, while sayur asem is tom yum goong. :D

Lodeh Terong dan Tahu - Eggplant and Tofu in Coconut Milk



Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 45 mins

Total Time: 1 hour

Serves: 8


  • 2 tablespoon oil
  • 6 shallots (Indonesian: bawang merah), peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic (Indonesian: bawang putih), peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon dried shrimps (Indonesian: ebi), soaked and drained, lightly toasted (*)
  • 2 red chilies (Indonesian: cabe merah besar), sliced diagonally
  • 2 green chilies (Indonesian: cabe hijau besar), sliced diagonally
  • 1 bay leaf (Indonesian: daun salam)
  • 1 cm galangal (Indonesian: lengkuas), bruised
  • 1 liter coconut milk (Indonesian: santan)
  • 2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon palm sugar (Indonesian: gula Jawa), or to taste
  • 500 gram eggplant (Indonesian: terong), quartered lengthwise and cut into 1 inch sections
  • 1 block of firm tofu (about 300 gram), cut into 1 inch cubes


  1. Heat oil in a pot on high heat, stir fry shallots and garlic until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
  2. Add dried shrimps, red chilies, green chilies, bay leaf, and galangal. Stir until fragrant, another 3 minutes.
  3. Pour coconut milk into the pot and season with salt and palm sugar. Bring to a boil.
  4. Add eggplant and tofu into the pot. Reduce heat and simmer until eggplant and tofu are fully cooked, about 30 minutes. Adjust salt and palm sugar as needed.
  5. Turn off heat, transfer to a serving bowl and serve immediately with steamed white rice.


  • (*) Omit the dried shrimps for a vegetarian version.

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