Batagor is an abbreviation from Baso Tahu Goreng (fried meatball and tofu), that in Indonesia is largely sold as fast food on the street, along with Siomay. Indonesian is used to differ Batagor and Siomay by how they’re served; Siomay are steamed and Batagor are deep fried, but their ingredients and shapes are the same.
As Indo-Chinese food, the concept of Batagor and Siomay is pretty similar to Chinese dumplings, yet their content is different. The common Batagor and Siomay main ingredient is fish or chicken as halal substitute for pork, and the use of rice wine as seasoning is dropped, since the majority of Indonesian is Muslim. Batagor and Siomay are also chewier and lighter to bite, because of egg and plenty amount of starch added.
The meal in dim sums that closest in shape with Batagor and Siomay is Jiaozi, one of dim sum assortments. Even though it’s believed that the term Siomay is coming from one of dim sum dumpling variety named Shumai, yet if you order it, you will get meal that its shape is not resembling common Indonesian Siomay. Due to Chinese diaspora, the look-alike modified Shumai are also available in Philipines (known as Siyomay) and in Japan (known as Shuumai).
Indonesian eat the Batagor or Siomay with spicy peanut sauce, chopped along with another assortments such as tofu for Batagor while for Siomay we usually have it with boiled egg, steamed potato, and rolled cabbage. Batagor and Siomay were growing in Bandung, West Java, so it’s common to state their name as Batagor Bandung or Siomay Bandung.
First time I tried to make this, the dumplings are chewy and too heavy. So, on the second attempt I modified the recipe by adjusting the amount of flour and water. This recipe works also for tuna, tenggiri (wahoos), or chicken, or mix between them.
Batagor and Siomay (Indonesian Dumplings)
Yield: 17 dumplings, 8 filled tofu
- 200 grams ground chicken or tuna
- 1 cup tapioca flour / cornstarch / potato starch
- 2 scallions, minced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 egg
- ½ tsp white pepper
- ½ tsp nutmeg powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- ¼ cup cold water
- 17 kulit pangsit (dumpling wrappers), the instant are available on stores, or make by yourself, see my recipe for it here.
- 4 square tofu, cut in half
- Peanut sauce (see my easy cheating recipe for it here)
- Lime (optional)
Preparation time: 30 m
Cooking time: 1 h 20 m
- Combine all filling ingredients; mix with your hand until well incorporated
- Using a teaspoon, fill the dumpling wrappers with two teaspoons of filling and fold it to form rose (see the picture)
- Slit the tofu by using a knife, fill the remaining filling.
- If the tofu and dumpling wrappers are hard to find, you can add extra 2 tbsp to the filling and form it into squash size balls. Coat it lightly with vegetable oil to prevent from being sticky.
- Prepare the steamer, fill it with water, place the steamer basket, and bring the water to boil on high heat. Then drop the dumplings and tofu into the basket. Steam for 30 minutes.
- The steamed batagor (siomay) are ready to eat, serve it chopped with another assortments, peanut sauce and lemon juice drizzle. They can be kept frozen up to one month.
- For batagor, fry the dumplings and tofu until golden brown, and chop. Drizzle with peanut sauce and lime juice.