Go Back

Gulai Pakis

fiddlehead ferns in coconut milk


  • 325 g fiddle-head ferns
  • 400 ml canned coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 can of water using the can from coconut milk
  • 1/4 c dried small shrimps available at Asian stores, soak in lukewarm water until "blooming"
  • fried cow rind you can use pork rind. Available at Asian stores, for pork rind
  • 1 tsp curry powder

Spice Paste

  • 1/2 of a medium size onion
  • 7 candlenuts available at Asian stores or online
  • 2 tsp ready to use fried garlic
  • 2 tsp cayenne powder
  • 2 daun salam Indonesian bay leaves, available at Asian stores or online
  • 1 piece dried galangal available at Asian stores or online
  • 1 tsp lemon grass powder available at Asian stores or online
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds ground
  • 1/4 tsp ginger powder
  • Hungarian Vegeta seasoning or something similar such as Royco or Masako available at major grocery stores, Asian stores, or online. If not, just sugar, salt to taste


Spice Paste

  • Grind onion, candlenuts, garlic, cayenne, lemon grass, and ginger powders into paste along with the curry powder, either using mortar and pestle or electric food processor

Cooking The Fiddlehead Ferns

  • Heat 1-2 tbsp oil and stir fry paste until fragrant
  • Add in ground coriander, daun salam and dried galangal, stir
  • Add in 3 tbsp water, stir
  • Add in fiddle head ferns, stir and cook for 5-8 mins then pour in coconut milk and water, bring to boil
  • Lower heat to medium, keep stirring, and bring back to boil
  • Adjust flavor with Vegeta seaoning (or salt and sugar) and cook until fiddle head ferns are softening (I like it still a little bit firm tho)
  • Once flavor is perfect to your liking, add in fried cow rind and cook til soften
  • Turn off heat and your dish is ready to serve with warm rice