|Course||Main or snack|
|Place of origin||Indonesia|
|Region or state||Bandung, West Java|
|Created by||Sundanese cuisine|
|Main ingredients||Wet krupuk cooked with scrambled egg, vegetables, and other protein sources (chicken, chicken feet, seafood, or beef sausages), with spicy sauces including garlic, shallot, kencur, sweet soy sauce, and chili sauce.|
|Variations||Seblak kering (dry seblak) or krupuk seblak which is actually a spicy krupuk (traditional cracker)|
Seblak is a Southeast Asian savoury and spicy dish, originating from Indonesia, made of wet krupuk (traditional Indonesian crackers) cooked with protein sources (egg, chicken, seafood or beef) in spicy sauce. Seblak is a specialty of Bandung city, West Java, Indonesia. Seblak can be acquired from restaurants, warungs or gerobak (cart) street vendors. It is one of the most popular street foods in Indonesia, especially in Bandung and Jakarta.
At first glance, the ingredients and cooking method of seblak is quite similar to other common Indonesian food, such as mie goreng and kwetiau goreng, however seblak differ with the chewy gelatin-like texture of wet krupuk, and mostly quite spicy, owed to generous addition of sambal chili paste. Customer might order the degree of spiciness of their seblak priorly, although the default taste was quite hot and spicy. Almost all kinds of krupuk can be made as seblak, but the most savoury (and usually more costly) version uses krupuk udang (prawn crackers). The wet krupuk is boiled or stir fried with scrambled egg, vegetables, and other protein sources; either chicken, seafood (prawn, fish and squid), or slices of beef sausages or bakso, stir-fried with spicy sauces including garlic, shallot, kencur, kecap manis (sweet soy sauce), and sambal chili sauce.
Moisted krupuk would shrunk into smaller size compared to crispy fried ones, thus a lot of krupuks are required to make a bowl of seblak. Since krupuk — especially prawn and fish crackers, are quite costly, the cheaper street food version usually add other carbohydrate sources as a filler in order to lessen the use of wet krupuk, and to make it more satisfying. These extra carbs are slices of kwetiau and/or macaroni. Another popular variant uses chicken feet as one of main ingredients.
In earlier days, the term seblak refer to hot and spicy spice mixture made from ground kencur (Kaempferia galanga) and chili pepper. It is also refer to a traditional hot and spicy crispy krupuk crackers originate from rural southern Cianjur area, which is now called as seblak kering (dry seblak) or krupuk seblak. However, today it is mostly refer to its wet and savoury version; the seblak basah.
Seblak is relatively a recent invention, this new street food appeared in Bandung circa 2000s. It is suggested that the dish was originally started as a method to avoid wasting uneaten old krupuk; a way to safely (and pleasantly) consume stale old krupuk by cooking it with other ingredients, to make it more satisfying.
However, another theory suggests that this dish was actually derived from an older dish, the krupuk godhog (Javanese for "boiled cracker") from Sumpiuh district, Banyumas, Central Java, circa 1940s. The dish was started as a humble snack among common poor people of this area, which uses stale krupuk as its main ingredient. Nevertheless, the pleasantly soft and chewy texture, also its savoury, rich and spicy taste, has made seblak a street food favourite in Indonesia.
- Karina Armadani (19 December 2014). "Kuliner Tradisional: Menikmati Pedasnya Seblak Khas Bandung". CNN Indonesia (in Indonesian).
- "Seblak ceker". Cookpad (in Indonesian).
- Astri Agustina (4 November 2015). "Ini dia asal usul seblak, si pedas beraroma kencur". Merdeka.com (in Indonesian).