In Yogyakarta, fried chicken (ayam goreng) is massive business.
Not in terms of chicken size; Jogja chicken seem to be on the smaller side. Speaks about the type of commercial chicken that we have here (slightly disturbing).
I was told (thanks Sharon and Regina!) that the best fried chicken in Yogyakarta is Ayam Goreng Nyonya Suharti. We dutifully relayed this to our airport taxi driver who kindly made a pit stop so we could have our first meal in Jogja.
You might be confused as there’s Ayam Goreng Suharti (logo of a woman, presumably Suharti herself), and there’s Ayam Goreng NY. Suharti (logo of two chicken). Turns out that the latter belongs to Suharti’s ex-husband, possible separation after he’d obtained the fried chicken recipe?
The Ayam Goreng NY. Suharti restaurant that we went to seemed built for tourists, definitely with prices on the higher side. For example, a plate of white rice costs Rp8,000 (approx RM2.30 or US$0.70). A plate of fried noodles costs Rp25,000 (approx RM7.10 or US$2.20). Not the type of prices you’d normally associate with Jogja.
For the two of us, we ordered half a chicken (Rp43,000 / RM12.20 / US$3.80), two white rice and a bowl of sayur lodeh, which is vegetables cooked in coconut milk and meat stock (Rp11,000 / RM3.20 / US$1.00).
When we realised that their 1/2 chicken equals to our 1/4 chicken, we ordered another 1/2 chicken.
The fried chicken is basically ayam goreng kresmes, which means crispy fried chicken. It is a double-cooking process of boiling the chicken in herbs and spices then deep-frying it. To get the crispy, crunchy (kresmes) bits, the leftover boiled stock is mixed with normal flour, rice flour and baking powder then deep-fried.
Good? Very!…. the first order that is. Crispy skin with juicy meat. The additional cripsy bits were flavourful and delicious, especially when paired with sambal (chilli paste). Essentially a white rice heaven! Our second order was disappointingly way too oily and not as fragrant. That went downhill fast.
Perhaps blogging this at midnight isn’t such a good idea. I’d be happy to have ayam goreng kresmes in front of me now, oily or not.
Ayam Goreng NY Suharti
No. 187, Jalan Gedong Kuning, Yogyakarta