Asian Foods Ep.2


by Thomas M. Tillman


Indonesian coconut turmeric rice with cashews will liven up any meal. Turmeric is the trending ingredient that everyone is talking about. I love turmeric, the bright yellow color, and the pungent bitter flavor that adds a beautiful punch to all kinds of foods. Turmeric's color is similar to that of saffron, but the taste is completely different. bowls of crushed cashews, cilantro, a wooden spoon and yellow rice Turmeric's taste has hints of orange and ginger. Turmeric is a root, and a member of the ginger family. It grows abundantly in India and also in Vietnam. Turmeric has been used for centuries in cooking and traditional medicine. It's been used to treat stomach and liver ailments. Presently there are various studies being conducted to test the healing properties of turmeric for curing various ailments. Cashews, like many nuts have a lot of nutrients like magnesium, and vitamin E. a spoonful of Indonesian coconut rice with rice, cashews, and cilantro in the back This is an Indonesian recipe. I found a similar recipe in an Asian cookbook my Japanese friend gifted me when she moved away. By the way the Indonesian name for this recipe is nasi kunci. I love making anything with rice, because it is like a blank slate. a closeup of Indonesian coconut rice with cilantro and a spoon and cashews on the left


Indonesian coconut turmeric rice with cashews is not hard to make at all. For starters very few ingredients are needed. If you have a rice cooker, you are golden. (I have those instruction below too.) Basically get everything into the pot and then wait for it to finish. It's an Asian recipe that's easy to put together on a weeknight.


Multiple photos in a collage showing the ingredients and a red pan to make Indonesian turmeric coconut rice or nasi kunci.
  1. Gather all your ingredients and gave them measured, chopped and ready to go.
  2. Rinse the rice in a strainer until the water runs mostly clear and set aside.
  3. Add the oil to a sauce pan on medium heat then sauté the shallots until translucent.
  4. Add the rice to the pan.
  5. Pour in the water.
  6. Add in the coconut milk.
  7. Add the salt and turmeric.
  8. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil while stirring to combine. Once it boils turn the heat to medium-low and cook covered for 20 minutes
  9. Fluff up the rice with a fork and add the chopped cashews.
  10. Top with fresh chopped cilantro and serve.


I absolutely adore the texture contrast in this dish: soft and crunchy.  I prefer to use Basmati rice because it has a bit more flavor than the traditional white rice. It's also the rice of choice in Indian, Pakistani, and Persian cuisine. Basmati rice is also more fragrant, so a perfect choice for coconut turmeric rice with cashews. a wooden spoon with cashews and a bowl of Indonesian coconut rice on the right


  • How long can I store this in the refrigerator? Once it has completely cooled you can store this in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave on medium power until hot but stop and stir every 30 seconds to fluff it up.
  • Can I freeze this dish? Yes, once it has completely cooled you can pack into zip top freezer bags packed flat to save space and expel all the air. This will keep for a month in the freezer. Thaw it completely and microwave is as described above.
  • How can I make this recipe in a rice cooker? Gather all the ingredients then sauté the minced shallots in a pan until translucent. Add the shallots to the rice cooker. Add the rest of the ingredients into the rice cooker, set for white rice if your unit has a setting for white or brown rice then start. Simple!


  • 1 cup Basmati rice
  • 2 tsp. vegetable oil
  • 1 shallot minced
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • ½ tsp. Kosher salt
  • ½ tsp. ground turmeric
  • ¼ cup cashews coarsely chopped
  • cilantro for garnish


  1. In a saucepan heat oil on medium heat, and saute shallots until translucent.
  2. Rinse the rice in a strainer until the water runs mostly clear. Add in the rice and stir to combine.
  3. Next, add the water, coconut milk, salt and turmeric and stir.
  4. Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil.
  5. Turn heat down to medium-low and cover.
  6. Cook covered for about 20 minutes.
  7. Fluff rice, and transfer to a bowl.
  8. Top with cashews, and cilantro.