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Throughout its history, Indonesia has been involved in trade due to its location and natural resources. Indonesia’s indigenous techniques and ingredients are influenced by India, the Middle East, China and finally Europe. Spanish and Portuguese traders brought New World produce even before the Dutch came to colonize most of Indonesia. The Indonesian island of Maluku, which is famed as "the Spice Island," also contributed to the introduction of native spices to Indonesian and global cuisine. The cuisine of Eastern Indonesia is similar to Polynesian and Melanesian cuisine.
Sumatran cuisine, for example, often shows its Middle Eastern and Indian influence, featuring curried meat and vegetables, while Javanese cuisine is rather more indigenously developed. Elements of Indonesian Chinese cuisine can be seen in Indonesian cuisine: items such asbakmi (noodles), bakso (meat balls) and lumpia have been completely assimilated.
The most popular dishes that originated in Indonesia are now common across most of Asia. Popular Indonesian dishes such as satay, beef rendang, and sambal are also favored...