Sambal Goreng Ati: Beef Liver with Potatoes & Snow Peas

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Nunuk Sri Rahayu
Nunuk Sri Rahayu
Nunuk hails from Solo, the historic royal capital and cultural centre of Java, Indonesia. She has been cooking since the age of 12, and also performs and teaches traditional Javanese dance. Her dream is to eventually write her own Indonesian cookbook.

Sambal goreng ati is a dish made of two main ingredients: beef liver and potatoes. It usually containts an additional vegetable, usually snow peas or petai (bitter bean or Parkia Speciosa). The dish is commonly served during Hari Raya (Eid) or during other celebrations, such as weddings,  selamatan (communal feasts) to welcome a newborn baby, circumcisions, moving to a new house, and so on. 

Generally, this sambal goreng can be made from other ingredients as well, such as chicken liver, tofu/tempeh, minced meat, or krecek (dried cattle skin). But for this recipe, I’ve made the classic beef liver sambal goreng.

Before the actual cooking process, the liver should be prepared by boiling it with herbs. This is to remove the beefy, metallic taste. It is then fried for a few minutes. It’s then cooked in a spice paste and herbs, and then tossed with fried cubed potatoes and blanched snow peas. 


The dish is rich and creamy from the thick coconut milk. The blending of the spices and herbs makes it aromatic and tasty. Serve the dish with steamed rice and opor ayam kuning or sambal goreng labu siam. For those who enjoy innards, sambal goreng ati is a real treat!

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Sambal Goreng Ati: Beef Liver with Potatoes and Snow Peas

Sambal Goreng Ati: Beef Liver with Potatoes & Snow Peas

  • Author: Nunuk Sri Rahayu
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Beef & Lamb
  • Method: Frying
  • Cuisine: Indonesian
  • Diet: Halal


Sambal goreng ati is a perfect Indonesian dish for people who love organs and innards. Here, beef liver is cooked in coconut milk and spices until the liquid has fully evaporated, then sauteed with potatoes and snow peas.


  • 500 gr beef liver
  • 500 gr potatoes
  • 3 big red chillies, deseeded, thinly sliced
  • 100 gr snow peas, remove the stem
  • 3 cm fresh ginger, peeled, bruised
  • 6 cm fresh galangal, bruised
  • 4 Indonesian bay leaves
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves
  • 8 shallots, peeled, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled, chopped
  • 3 big red chillies, chopped
  • 3 cm ginger, peeled, chopped
  • 1 tsp whole coriander
  • 1 lemongrass, use only the white part, bruised, knotted
  • 1 tbsp tamarind extract
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • Salt to taste
  • Cooking oil for frying and to saute


  1. In a large pot, boil some water with salt, half the galangal, bruised ginger, 2 bay leaves and 2 kaffir lime leaves. Add the liver and boil for about 30 minutes.Boil the liver
  2. When done, wait for the liver to cool, then cut into small cubes (around 2×2 cm)
  3. Deep fry the cubed liver for about 10 minutes. Set aside.Deep fry the cubed liver
  4. Peel the potatoes, wash and cut into cubes (around 2×2 cm).
  5. Deep fry the potatoes until golden, set aside.Deep fry the potatoes
  6. Blanch the snow peas for 2 minutes, then rinse immediately with cold water. Set aside.
  7. Heat 3 tbsp of cooking oil in a pan, and saute the sliced chillies for about 4 minutes. Set aside.saute the sliced chillies
  8. Using a blender or food processor, blend into a fine paste: shallots, garlic, chopped red chillies, chopped ginger, and coriander.
  9. Heat 4 tbsp cooking oil in a wok using medium high heat.
  10. Saute the spice paste with the remaining galangal, lemongrass, kaffir limes and bay leaves until fragrant, around 4 minutes.
  11. Add the liver, stir.Add the liver, stir.
  12. Add tamarind extract and salt, stir.
  13. Add the coconut milk.
  14. Cook for about 20 minutes on medium heat.
  15. Add the sauteed sliced chillies and potatoes. Stir-fry for about 10 minutes.

    Add the sauteed sliced chillies

  16. Add the snow peas, cook for about 1 minute and then turn off the stove.

    Add the potatoes and snow peas

  17. Transfer to a serving plate.


  • The dish is satisfyingly filling if eaten by itself, but it’s usually part of a more complex meal that includes small quantities of a variety of dishes.

Keywords: offal, innards, spicy, coconut

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