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I have a fond memory of kecap manis, Indonesian sweet soy sauce. When I was little, my late and beloved mama used to give me afternoon snack. It is a plate of sliced tomatoes drizzled with kecap manis and some sugar. Very simple but the memory lasts forever.

Ahh… Just writing about this makes me miss my mama a lot. I used to sit on the porch after my afternoon shower, and she would offer me the snack. I would eat them all and she would then stroke my hair and said, “Very good, Lily.”

Many Indonesian dishes use kecap manis, from fried noodles, soup, to chili sauce. Sometimes my daughter would just drizzle it on top of her steamy hot rice and eat it with kerupuk and fried eggs.

You can find kecap manis in Asian stores around you. There are a few brands and they are all good. I like Bango brand and ABC brand. There is no particular reason, it’s just that I am used to them.

The difference between kecap manis and soy sauce is that it is sweeter, hence the name manis means sweet. It is thicker in consistency and darker in color. It has that light sweet molasses tone into it.

If you are gluten intolerance of allergic to gluten, you can make your own kecap manis. It is actually very simple.

Check out my recipe for Homemade Kecap Manis.