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Blendrang: A Distinctive Feature of Traditional Javanese Cuisine

Blendrang is a traditional Javanese side dish, typically made by reheating coconut milk-based dishes for more than two days. 

Dishes that can be turned into blendrang include those with coconut milk sauces, such as young jackfruit stew, eggplant, or various meats like beef, goat, and chicken.

The term "blendrang" refers to dishes that have been reheated multiple times until the sauce evaporates and dries up. 

Historically, people used to cook in large quantities with ample coconut milk. These dishes could be reheated for up to two days.

As the dish is reheated, the liquid evaporates and the flavors concentrate, resulting in a drier dish where the sauce is absorbed into the vegetables or meat, creating blendrang.

Interestingly, when vegetables and meat become blendrang, they taste better, the flavors are more intense, and they are very delicious when eaten with warm rice.

The meat that has become blendrang is also more tender and melts in the mouth.

This practice of making blendrang has been carried out by Indonesians, particularly on the island of Java and in areas like Blitar.

In the past, cooking vegetables or meat as side dishes for rice was typically done every 3-5 days, because the more they were reheated, the tastier they became.

Nowadays, this practice has shifted, and it is rare to find people cooking vegetables or meat until they become blendrang.

This sociological change has occurred due to changes in eating habits. Nowadays, people cook for one meal at a time, so they might have up to three different menus in a single day.

Additionally, it is now relatively easy to find food, especially with modern cooking appliances that are much more advanced than in the past.