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History of Cap Cay, Nutritious Vegetable Dish from Chinese Cuisine

JAKARTA – Cap cay is a popular stir-fried dish that originates from Chinese cuisine. In Hokkien, the word ‘cap’ means ‘ten’, while ‘cay’ means ‘vegetables’. This name matches with the main ingredients of this dish, which are ten types of vegetables seasoned with savory herbs and seasonings.

Quoted from RRI, Cap Cay was an imperial food in Qing Dynasty in China. Back then, Cap Cay was a nutritious dish made from various vegetables and offal.

However, Aji Bromokusumo, Chinese culinary expert, stated that Cap Cay was made of leftover foods made by imperial cooks. In the dynasty era, the emperor did not want to eat the leftover foods. Instead of throwing the leftover away, the imperial cooks mixed all the leftover food and vegetables to create a new dish.

Cap Cay was brought into Indonesia by the immigrants. According to Aji, the immigrants coming to Indonesia cooked Cap Cay as they could find various vegetables in Indonesia. Besides, for the immigrants, the price of meat in Indonesia was still relatively costly.

Nowadays, Cap Cay has become a popular dish in Indonesia that contains many vitamins and minerals as it is made mainly of vegetables. You may also add some source of proteins, such as shrimp, squid, meatballs, and sausage.

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