Do you often feel guilty after a fill of your favourite rendang? Well, you can now put that guilt aside, and don’t even have to wait till Raya to enjoy it because science says this Malaysian favourite is actually good for you. A 2016 study by the Agriculture Technology Andalus University in West Sumatra, which evaluated the nutritional value of rendang Minangkabau, reveals that the dish retains its nutritional value even with the long cooking process. And it gets even better as it becomes more easily digestible.
The study finds that the protein content in a beef rendang decreases by 1% compared to its raw state, but the long cooking process doesn’t damage the nutrients. We spoke to food scientist Dr. Vincent Candrawinata, and he says protein gets denatured when heat is applied to it, but that does not mean that it gets destroyed.
“Protein is made up of amino acid chains. Heating the protein means that the structure and conformation of these amino acid chains change.
“A simple example is when you cook egg white, the heat applied changes the structure of the amino acids and hence you end up with firm texture and white colour. Cooking a beef rendang does not compromise the protein content. Instead, it increases the digestibility of the meat,” he says.
Isn’t that a splendid reason for you to enjoy this dish every now and then? But be moderate as the mighty rendang, as we know it, is still high in calorie – per serving of this dish is about 550 calories!
Swipe right for tips on how you can have your rendang in healthier ways.