Food,  Meat & Eggs,  Soups & Salads

Saoto Soup (Suriname / Javanese style)

I used to have this soup back in Holland and I’ve been trying to find a recipe that tastes similar to the soup in that little Indonesian shop by the market… I have to say that this one comes pretty close. A few of these ingredients were tough to find here, but since there are so many- I think its OK if you skip some.
When serving this soup you want to lay all the ingredients out separately so that people can add as much (or as little) of what they like.

Saoto Soup


± 3 liter water
600 gr chicken (cut)
5 slices galangal root (laos)
4 cloves garlic, whole
1 onion (cut in half)
1 stalk lemon grass (sereh)
1 Indonesian bay leaf (duon salam)
2 large bouillon cubes
5 pieces whole allspice
1 tsp black and/or white pepper
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp crushed cumin
1/2 tsp coriander powder

To garnish the soup:
6 hard boiled eggs
300 gr beansprouts (taugé)
2 cups shredded cabage
2 string cut potatoes, fried
1 small pack bean thread vermicelli, fried (soe-on)
fried onions and garlic
3 cups of cooked shredded chicken breast
1 stalk celery & parsley (chopped)

Sambal ketjap (spicy soy sauce):
1 pepper (habanero or scotch bonnet)
5 tbsp soy sauce
1 clove garlic
1 tsp sugar


Add all of the ingredients for the broth into a large pot and being to a boil, reduce the heat till about medium and cook until the chicken is done (about half an hour). Remove the chicken from the soup and cook for another hour or so on low heat ( the longer the better). Add salt to taste.


  1. Peel, cut, and fry the potatoes.
  2. Once the chicken has cooled shred the meat with your fingers or use forks (no chopper). 
  3. Boil, then peel the eggs.
  4. Rinse and clean the beansprouts. 
  5. Fry the vermicelli, onion and garlic separately in hot oil. Keep all these ingredients in separate bowls.
  6. Shred the cabbage.
  7. Prepare the sambal ketjap (spicy soy sauce). Boil the whole pepper for a short time in the soup, scoop it out and chop it with the clove of garlic before adding some sugar and soy sauce.

To serve:
In each soup bowl, add one boiled egg, some beansprouts, cabage, fried potatoes, onion/garlic, chicken, topped by vermicelli. Pour the hot soup on top and add celery/parsley. If you like it spicy, add some sambal ketjap.

This recipe is adapted from a blog called Multi Cooking 

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