Smashed Your Chicken?–Indonesian Famous Fried Chicken – Ayam Penyet (印尼炸鸡)



Ayam means chicken and penyet means smashed – the chicken was usually cooked, smashed and seasons with herbs and spices. It was then served with special spicy sambal or chilli sauce and some special fritters called kremes. It is a popular chicken dish that was sold in restaurants and hawkers centre. I have my fair share of ayam penyet during my business stays in Jakarta, Indonesia years ago.


As per Wikipedia:

“Ayam Penyet (smashed fried chicken) is an Indonesian dish consisting of fried chicken that is then smashed to make it softer, sambal, cucumbers, fried tofu and tempeh. It has recently surged in popularity across South East Asia, where various chains of franchises has opened selling the dish along with other Indonesian delicacies. It is also known for its spicy sambal, which is made with a mixture of chilli, anchovies, tomatoes, onions, garlics, belacan, assam and lime juice. Like its namesake, the mixture is then smashed into a paste to be eaten with the dish.” (Source:


I am sharing a rather unconventional method of cooking, using the microwave to pre-cook the chicken, marinate and deep frying instead of boiling the chicken over the stove before it was deep fried. If you do not have the microwave oven, you can just boiled the chicken using some water over the stove.


There are a few things that I have to highlight here:

  • I have used a mixture of traditional mortar and pastel and modern blender depending on what is more convenience to me. Therefore, these two are substitutable. Using blender will yield a finer chilli sambal and that may look slightly different from the sambal that you are eating in the stalls. Those sambal usually comes with chilli seeds and tomato seeds as they are using a mortar and pastel to pound.


  • The sambal and marinating recipe are very versatile. Most are optional ingredients and substitutable, therefore, feel free to add or minus the quantities or ingredients stated to suit your taste buds. It can also used for nasi lemak as well though the ingredients are slightly different. However, as far as sambal is concerned, one can hardly find two exactly similar recipe and as the saying goes, the number of sambal recipe can be as many as the number of grandmothers in a village.. Meaning, every household will have their own recipe that they are proud of.


  • Whether smashing the chicken is before serving or before the deep frying is up to you. If you want more juicy chicken, you can pound before serving. As I prefer the chicken to be a bit crispy and chewy and full of herbs flavour, I have smashed the cooked chicken before marinating and deep frying.


  • Most of the chicken that I have tasted are not actually juicy, but more of crispy, a bit chewy and rather dry. Having said that, it is full of herbal aroma. In fact, some recipes requires very lean chicken such as ayam kampong (chicken bred in a courtyard). Depending on what is your preference, if you want juicier chicken, deep fry for a shorter period of time and for this illustration, I have purposely deep fried until it resembles the one that I have eaten in Jakarta. If you do not want to deep fry, you can always try to air fry the cooked chicken.


  • As for the special fritters or kremes, depending on the size of the sift you have, smaller holes will yield much smaller fritter and the fritter in this illustration is slightly bigger than what is commercially sold because i have made a wrong decision of using a sift with bigger holes. However, such fritters are optional and if prepared, it definitely goes well with the fried chicken.



Servings: 3-4 adult servings 


Spice for marinating the cooked chicken

  • 3-4 chicken drumsticks (鸡腿)
  • 6 cm long of lemon grass (Serai) (white portion) (香茅)
  • 5 shallots (bawang merah) (小葱头)
  • 5 cloves of garlics  (bawang putih)(蒜头)
  • 3-4 bay leaves (daum salam) – I have used curry leaves (月桂叶)
  • 2 cm long fresh turmeric (kunyit) (黄姜)
  • 2 cm long galangal (lengkuas) (篮姜)
  • 1 fresh red chilli (Cili)(辣椒)
  • 1 teaspoon of coriander powder (serbuk ketumbar) (芫茜粉)


Sambal Recipe 1

  • 5 fresh chillies (cili) (辣椒) – or bird eye chilli or other types of chlli or green chilli
  • 2 big red onion (bawang – 红色大葱) or 10 shallots (bawang merah – 小葱头)
  • 10 cloves of garlics (bawang putih – 蒜头)
  • 5 candlenuts (buah keras – 坚果)
  • 4 cm lemon grass (serai – 香茅) – optional
  • 4 cm long shrimp paste (belachan – 虾酱)
  • 2 tomatoes (tomato – 番茄) –  I have used cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of baby shrimps or dry shrimps (udang kering – 虾米) – soaked – can be substitutes with anchovies (ikan bilis – 小鱼)
  • 3-4 tablespoons of white sugar or brown sugar (gula perang – 核糖或白糖)


Sambal Recipe 2 – updated on 20.4.2015

  • 10 chilli padi
  • 2-4 big chilli
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • About 2 cm long of toasted belachan or 2 tablespoons of belachan powder
  • 1 big tomato – sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Sugar to taste


  • Juices extracted from 2-3 limes for the cooking of sambal
  • 1-2 tablespoon of self raising flours for preparing fritters
  • Some cooking oil for deep frying the chicken and kremes
  • Some vegetables such as ladies fingers, cucumber, kangkong or others and side ingredients like taukwa or tempeh to go with the chicken dish.




  • Cooked the chicken (to about 80 per cent cooked) in the microwave in accordance to microwave instructions. If you do not have a microwave oven, cooked the chicken in a hot pot of water (water adequate to cover the chicken), cooked under high heat for about 10-15 minutes or until the chicken is 80% cooked.

  • Meanwhile, blend the chicken marinating ingredients in a food processor or pound in a mortar until fine. Set aside for later use.


  • When the chicken is ready, use something hard to slightly smash  the cooked chicken (optional, you can smash it before serving if you wish). Spread the chicken marinating ingredients over the chicken thoroughly. Marinate for at least one hour. Keep all the meat juices or chicken stocks from cooking the chicken.


  • After marinating, set aside the chicken for later deep frying. Add some chicken juices to the chicken marinating herbs. Strain and add some (1-2 tablespoons) self raising flour , stir until well mixed. Set aside for later use.


  • Heat up a pot of hot oil, deep fry the chicken until golden brown. If you prefer crispy chewy chicken, you will need to deep fry longer. Drain the chicken and pour the batter in a. Sift the batter into the hot oil and deep fried the fritters for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown. Note that this sieve’s holes are slightly bigger. Therefore, you may want to use a sieve with smaller holes. Drain the chicken and kremes or fritters in an oil absorbing paper.


  • To prepare the sambal or chilli dip, put all the ingredients in the blender and blend until fine.

PicMonkey Collage1

  • Have a few tablespoons of cooking oil, cooked the blended herbs until the colour darkens, the sambal thickens and fragrances penetrates the house. Before off the heat, add the sugar and lime juice, stir until well mixed. Dish up and served with the chicken.


  • For sambal recipe 2, blend all the ingredients together, add sugar and salt to taste. NOTE THAT belachan can be rather salty, please taste some before adding sugar and salt. In addition, belachan must be toasted until cooked, otherwise the sambal can be rather stinky. If you will like to know how to toast belachan, you can refer to this post: Belachan Bee Hoon (虾酱米粉)


  • Before serving, smashed the fried chicken (if desired) and the dish is best serve with additional lime, some blanched ladies fingers, fresh cucumbers, fried tempeh, taukwa or any other ingredients that suit your taste buds.



A rather long post and I hope that this post will serve as a starting point for you to cook the dish. Based on this, you can then adjust it to suit your taste buds in the next try.


Hope you like the post today. Cheers and have a nice day.


  • For more recipes, you can refer to my RECIPE INDEX (updated as at 21 March 2014)  here and you can follow me at PINTEREST or visit the blog’s FACEBOOK PAGE to keep abreast of my future posts.  



15 thoughts on “Smashed Your Chicken?–Indonesian Famous Fried Chicken – Ayam Penyet (印尼炸鸡)

  1. Thanks for sharing as I saw this Indon Fried Chicken in TV, said that was the best in Indon cuisine. The sambal has tomato in it and fried, it should be yummy, Will try this recipe.

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