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Tahu Goreng Lengkuas - Fried Tofu in Galangal

Tofu, tempeh, and chicken shared many similar recipes in Indonesia, especially for deep frying. So if a recipe works well for one, it has a high probability that it will work for the other two. The best example for this is of course bacem, which you can use the same recipe for tofu, tempeh, or chicken (or all three at once for variety). This recipe for tahu goreng lengkuas works well for tempeh and chicken, so if you are somehow averse or allergic to soy products, feel free to substitute with chicken :)

Tahu Goreng Lengkuas - Fried Tofu in Galangal
Tahu Goreng Lengkuas - Fried Tofu in Galangal

Tahu Goreng Lengkuas - Fried Tofu in Galangal

5.0 from 2 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson




Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 1 min

Total Time: 16 mins

Serves: 8

Print Recipe


  • 2 blocks of firm tofu (Indonesian: tahu putih Cina), about 500 gram
  • 2 bay leaves (Indonesian: daun salam)
  • 2 teaspoon palm sugar (Indonesian: gula Jawa)
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 600 ml water
  • Grind the following into spice paste
  • 100 gram galangal (Indonesian: lengkuas)
  • 8 shallots (Indonesian: bawang merah)
  • 5 cloves garlic (Indonesian: bawang putih)
  • 3 candlenuts (Indonesian: kemiri)
  • 2 lemongrass (Indonesian: sereh)
  • 1 fresh turmeric (Indonesian: kunyit), peeled
  • 1½ teaspoon ground coriander (Indonesian: bubuk ketumbar)


  1. Place all ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Cook uncovered until all liquid has been absorbed by the tofu. Turn off heat and set aside.
  2. Heat enough oil in a pot for deep frying. Fry the tofu until crispy and golden brown. Serve immediately.
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Indonesian Kitchen


  • Nicha@greenrecipes Nicha@greenrecipes says:

    Hi Anita. This looks awesome! I would like to try it, but I can't find candlenuts here, where I live. Will the dish taste a lot different without them?

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Nicha, the best substitution for candlenut is macadamia. But, if macadamia nut is also not easily available, you can safely skip it for this recipe. :)

  • Chris Chris says:

    Hi Anita Interested to make this. How long the cooking will take roughly for the tofu to absorb the spice liquid?thanks in advance

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Chris, if you are patient, then you should cook until all the liquid has been absorbed by the tofu. But, you can always stop earlier once the tofu is no longer white :)

  • Vivian Vivian says:

    How to grind a dried slice galangal? Do i need to soak and soften them first?

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Vivian, I haven't used dried galangal for this recipe before. I think soaking dried galangal to soften them prior to grinding is the way to go. Please let me know how it turns out if you decide to give it a try. :)

  • Milky Milky says:

    The flavor of these is incredibly delicious, and the middle is almost creamy- even eating it cold the next day was really really good! I didn't get a massively crispy crust though- not sure if that was normal or just my own lackluster frying. But even just a little layer really seals in the moisture and flavor to make it a really stand-out way to cook tofu.

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