Fiddle Heads oh Fiddle Heads How Long Can You Stay?

Milk of Thy Kindness

For some weird reason when I was thinking of fiddle heads,  Sayur Pakis pops up in my head. Sayur means vegetable, and Pakis means fern in Indonesian.To my suprise guess what Mr google showed  when I typed sayur pakis?drumrolls….


Yes, the very same fiddleheads! I was so overjoyed with this finding because this opens up a new dimension on everything! I mean I am this much smarter now knowing this piece of information!

Oddly what is seen as treats in gourmet and farmers market here, is the other way around back home. Its true what they say, you eat with your eyes first.Maybe their look is quite intimidating and alien like, and when they are older they are piney and doesn’t look like edible. Yes a lot of emphasis on looks. But that is  enough, these ferns are sweet, nuty, and delicious! Even if its underappreciated, and underused in other Indonesian cuisines, Padang cuisine glorifies this vegetables, and they do it magnificently. They cook them in coconut rich broth made of gallangal, lemongrass, shallots and so many other goodness. So you know where this is going right?I mean I enjoy simple sauteed fiddle heads with garlic,and just salt and pepper which I cooked yesterday.But looking at the pictures of those Padang foods that I took few weeks ago, just intensifies the need to eat them haha.


I love Taishan Cauliflower, their stem are greener, crunchier, more delicate, and  more subtle in flavor in comparison to the regular cauliflower. Their florets are tinier and ununiformed in size. A perfect match for unique looking fiddleheads So I decided to put them in the same wok . If you are trying to explore other vegetables to  pair nicely with fiddlheads for this recipe, I would suggest  some raw sweet peas, or green beans would be good too.

So inspired by the vibrant taste of the tropics, I cooked the vegetables in fragrant coconut oil,with chili, shallots and garlic.  I add it fish sauce to add a little umami and some lime juice to makes the dish fresh ! This was a dream lunch  The only thing missing from this lunch : a young coconut! Well I cant possibly go with the theme without rice and protein right? Problem: beautiful produce tends to distract me, last week I went crazy on them that I  have no money left  for protein  but this free run  eggs.  Ok its a good  start, then I opened my pantry and found a can of spam. Spam oh Spam, how I swear to never come near you again,and there you are on my plate now.


So here it is my humble plate. This is so satisfying though! You should prove it yourself!

Cauliflower and Fiddle Heads StirFry


  • 1/2 head cauliflower (cut into smaller pieces)
  • 1/2lb fiddleheads (washed and cleaned thoroughly from all the brown bits)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil
  • 1 red chillies (sliced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (chopped)
  • 3 Medium shallots (or a half of small red onions thinly sliced)
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce (can be substituted with light soy sauce)
  • pinch ground white pepper
  • a splash lime/ lemon juice (about a teaspoon)
  • a pinch sugar


Step 1
Boil some water on the pot and add a pinch of salt
Step 2
Clean Fiddleheads from its brown bits under running cold water, clean and wash the cut up cauliflower too
Step 3
Once the water is boiling, first cook the cauliflower for 2-3 minutes to keep them crunchy . Scoop it out of the boiling water and rinse with cold water.
Step 4
Next, throw in the cleaned fiddleheads into the boiling water for at least 7 minutes, it is toxic to eat undercooked fidddleheads. Once the fiddleheads are cooked,rinse with cold water.
Step 5
Heat up the coconut oil , and throw in the red onions / shallot, garlic and chillies ,cook until fragrant and the onions sweat.
Step 6
Throw in the cauliflower and fiddleheads. Remove from heat and add the fish sauce, white pepper, and sugar and salt to taste. Finish it with a squirt of lime juice

Follow me on instagram @milkofthykindness for more mouthwatering pictures!



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