There is a saying, “You can take a Sarawakian out of Sarawak, but you can’t take Sarawak out of a Sarawakian“. It’s a quaint way of saying that you are bound to remember your roots wherever you are 🙂

This is so true in my case, where food is concerned, of course. I’m sure many people fall in the same boat as I do *wink*  

Moving to Belgium some two decades ago, revisiting and reminiscing childhood memories in any shapes and forms become a norm. The dish that I often re-visit time and time again is none other than the murky-looking green dish called Ka Chang Ma (KCM) where chicken meat is the main protein ingredient in the recipe. This dish is undisputably renowed (only) in Sarawak, especially in Kuching. It’s not everyone’s favourite dish, to be honest, because the dish has been stigmatised as a food for women in confinement. This conservative rationale no longer holds true today. KCM is cooked all year round.

Thermomix Cooking Defined

3 years ago, I posted a rather comprehensive write-up of this unique dish, with a story to tell. You can read it all here: Ka Chang Ma (The Mother of all Dishes)

While it was prepared the conventional way (with Mum’s recipe et al) then, I converted the recipe in the Thermomix jargon. Now, I have both methods on my blog which I can refer to anytime  🙂


KCM cooked the Conventional way (day light)


KCM cooked in TM5 (night light)


Cooking in either way had no influence on the taste (the end result), however, the cooking processes were obviously different. 

In a nutshell (metaphorically speaking): You want to go to Restaurant X. You have a choice of either taking the car which takes 5 mins OR on foot, which takes 15 mins. By either taking the car or going on foot, you will reach the same ultimate destination. The differences are the mode of transportation and the duration it takes from origin to destination. In this example the car was the Thermomix  way of cooking, whilst going on foot was the conventional  or traditional way of cooking. Got it?

Or simply, the Thermomix is just another collection of kitchen gadget in addition to a Slow Cooker, a Multi Cooker, a Pressure Cooker, etc that you might already have, only that it replaces at least 10 kitchen appliances: blender, grater, chopper, steamer, (slow)cooker, rice cooker, mixer, soup maker, dough kneading machine to name but a few.

Any conventional recipe can be converted to the TM method. There’s no secret. There’s no trick.  All you need to do is to decipher the logic.


How I cooked the KCM in my TM5

Ingredient A –

  • 10 g loose leaf KCM (Motherwort) dried herb 

Ingredients B –

  • 20 g sesame oil
  • 695 g chicken drumsticks 

Ingredients C –

  • 10 g ground KCM dried herb
  • 10 g ground ginger
  • 50 g whiskey 
  • 200 g water

Ingredients D –

  • 20 g whiskey 
  • 300 g water
  • 1/2 cube vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp ground ginger 
  • 5 g sesame oil

 How to prepare?

  1. Toast the loose leaf KCM in the TM bowl for 10 mins/ V/ sp1
  2. Grind the toasted herb when the temperature drops below 60 deg C. Mill for 1 min/ sp6 -> 10
  3. Tip ground KCM in a clean bowl. Set aside.
  4. Add B in TM bowl. Cook for 5 mins/ V/ R/ spoon.
  5. Add C and cook further for 22 mins/ V/ R/ spoon
  6. Adjust seasoning by adding D. Cook for a further 5 mins/ V/ R/ spoon
  7. Done!


Verdict : KCM is undeniably one of my favourite comfort foods. With its myriad of nutritional benefits, I could have this dish anytime I want, but like many things, there is always a limit. Moderation is key.  By the way, I have cooked several different dishes with or without using the Thermomix. There are some dishes that worked better the conventional way. For KCM, if given the choice, I would cook the dish in my TM5. Why? Because the cooking is 100% done in the Thermomix, from dry-roasting the herbs to grinding the herbs to braising the chicken. Et voilà, dinner’s served! Simply effortless.

The KCM Chicken dish (or braised Motherwort Chicken dish) is a local dish of Sarawak. For this I’m linking this post to April Tea Time Treats: Local & Regional Recipes hosted by Lavender and Lovage and The Hedgecombers

Ka Chang Ma is Motherwort, an herbaceous plant of the mint family. This recipe uses only the dried herb. I’m linking this post to Lavender and Lovage’s Cooking with Herbs for Easter and Spring


Have a great week!


  1. Giadora J. Nuek says:

    Hallo.. My name is Giadora, I’m a Sarawakian too and I’m living in Belgium since last year. I love your blog. I have a question for you, where did you get the Ka Changma in Belgium? 😀

  2. Nasifriet says:

    Hi Giadora, good to know of another Sarawakian in BE! Sorry to disappoint you, but we can’t find this previous herb in Belgium. If you go back to Sarawak next, don’t forget to buy this herb and bring it back with you. I do that all the time. Buy the loose leaves ones and dry roast the herbs yourself and then grind/ blend the amount you want. Trust me, it’ll be very aromatic. If you intend to pre-grind the KCM herbs, then you need to store them in airtight jar. It’ll last for years!

    By the way, where are you located in BE?

  3. GiaJo Nuek says:

    Awww.. I understand but it’s okay because luckily right now I am in Sarawak! hahaha! 😀 I’m on holidays to meet my family and next month I’ll be going back home to BEL again. Thanks for the lovely advice, NasiFriet! It’s too bad they don’t have KCM herbs in BEL but I’ve heard they do sell KCM in Antwerp (chinatown) and I hope they do. I live in Melle, located near Ghent.

  4. Nasifriet says:

    If you’re in S’wak, that’s even better. Bring your supplies of KCM with you next month. A little goes a long way and it will last you a long time!!

    Btw, I wonder who your source is who told you about the availability of KCM herbs at Chinatown, Antwerp. KCM is a very Sarawakian thing. Even the West Malaysians have not heard or have eaten the dish. What more to say, other countries. However, if you can really find it, let me know😝

    So you’re in Ghent; nice city, but it’s quite far from where I am …

  5. GiaJo Nuek says:

    That’s true, it is a Sarawakian thing.. Hehe
    About the China Town, Antwerp… My boyfriend and I were assumed it is there and also I “Aok jak la, tengok la mun kita sampai kat Antwerp semasa balit ke Belgium bulan depan” 😛 So, yeah…. If I succeed to find the precious treasure, I will tell you. 😀
    I never bring KCM herbs back to BEL before and it is going to be my first time if I bring it. The reason I wanted to bring is for my Sarawakian friend who lives in the Netherlands, she was my classmate from Immigration class and now we’re best friend. She requested it.
    One more question… How did you manage to bring it home to BEL?

  6. Nasifriet says:

    Aha ! So you were assuming!! Your assumption will be a disappointing negative. You better bring some for your bff in NL, otherwise “ponan bah, sik makan”.

    Your last question, I pm’d you separately 😜. With all this Kachang ma talk, I’m craving for one. Best comfy food in this cold weather 😉

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