Tapai or tape (both spellings commonly pronounced tah-peh), sometimes referred to as peuyeum (from Sundanese Language) , is a traditional fermented food found throughout much of East- and Southeast Asia. It is a sweet or sour alcoholic paste and can be used directly as a food or in traditional recipes. Tapai can be made from a variety of carbohydrate sources, but typically from cassava, white rice, or glutinous rice. Fermentation is performed by a variety of moulds including Aspergillus oryzae, Rhizopus oryzae, Amylomyces rouxii or Mucor spp, and yeasts including Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and Saccharomycopsis fibuliger, Endomycopsis burtonii and others, along with bacteria. Tapai is also used to make alcoholic beverages.
Tapai is made by inoculating a carbohydrate source with the required microorganisms in a starter culture. This culture has different names in different regions, shown in the table below. The culture can be naturally captured from the wild, by mixing rice flour with ground spices (include garlic, pepper, chili, cinnamon), cane sugar or coconut water, slices of ginger or ginger extract, and water to make a dough. The dough is pressed into round cakes, about 3cm across and 1cm thick, and left to incubate on trays with banana leaves under and over them for two to three days. They are then dried and stored, ready for use.
Ragi tapai is used to ferment different types of carbohydrates such as cassava, cooked white rice or glutinous rice, and sometimes sweet potatoes. The general process is to wash and cook the target food, cool to about 30°C, mix in some powdered ragi tapai, and rest in covered jars for one to two days. With cassava and sweet potato, the tubers are washed and peeled before cooking, then layered in baskets with ragi tapai sprinkled over each layer.
|white rice||chao||lao-chao, chiu-niang||tapai nasi||nuruk?||tapai nasi||binuburang basi, tapay basi||tapai nasi||khao-mak|
|glutinous rice||Bhattejaanr||tapai ketan||tapai pulut|
|cassava||tapai ketala, tape telor, peuyeum||tapai ubi kayu||binuburang ube, tapay panggi|
- Haard, Norman F.; et al (1999). Fermented Cereals. A Global Perspective. United Nations FAO. Retrieved on 2006-07-28.
- Gandjar, Indrawati (August 2003). TAPAI from Cassava and Cereals (pdf). University of Indonesia. Retrieved on 2006-07-28.