The Sate King
Steven’s Planet Barbecue world tour continues. This stop? Kejang, Malaysia. It’s the birthplace of one of the world’s great kebabs: sate kajang. Here Steven samples a lemongrass and ginger marinated sate with Malaysian barbecue mogul Samuri Juraimi. Samuri’s great uncle brought the original recipe to Malaysia from Indonesia, plying his trade from a mobile sate kitchen he transported on his shoulders. Today great nephew presides over a empire that includes 16 restaurants, including the flagship Sate Kajang, which seats 500.
Sate is cooked over natural lump charcoal on a slender grill kept screaming hot by a fan blowing at one end. The sates are basted with a sweet mixture of peanuts and sugar and the cooking time is measure in minutes.
You buy sates by the bunch and it’s not uncommon for patrons to eat 20 or 30 sates at one seating.
Sate kajang is traditionally served with cubes of steamed rice cake (the stuff in the palm leaf basket), diced cucumber, diced shallot, and a sweet peanut sauce ignited with chili sambal. Pictured on the sate plate are chicken, lamb, tripe, and rabbit sates. But you can’t eat just one.