Sambal Belacan

Sambal Belacan is an indispensable chili condiment in Malaysian cuisine. For many, a meal is incomplete without this spicy savory concoction as it whets one’s appetite and goes with just about everything. Like Nasi Lemak, Malaysians absolutely love and can’t leave home without it. This sauce can be added in your stir-fried dishes (like fried rice, noodle, seafood, or veggies …) for more tasting.

There are many versions of Sambal Belacan but three ingredients – red chilies, belacan (shrimp paste), and lime juice are essential. Salt and sugar to taste is optional.



  • 10 nos shallots
  • 1 kg red chile
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 200 gr dried shrimp (soaked in warm water about 5 minutes)
  • 100 gr dried chile (soaked in warm water about 5 minutes) or 5 tsps chile powder
  • 250 gr Belacan, toasted
  • 2 tsps turmeric powder
  • 250 gr tomato paste
  • 100 gr candle nuts (optional)
  • 1 no galangal or ginger
  • 5 tbsps cooking oil
  • 4 tbsps tamarind juice
  • 3 tbsps palm sugar
  • Fish sauce to taste


  1. In food processor: blend shallot,chile, garlic, shrimp, nuts. then set aside.
  2. Heat up a sauce pot (or wok) on low heat to medium heat, add cooking oil, then saute the mixture above.
  3. Add tomato paste, belachan, tamarind juice, sugar. Add some chicken stock (or water) and bring to simmerring about 45 minutes, adjust seasoning with fish sauce or sugar if too salty. Cool down the sauce and keep in fridge up to 2 weeks.

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Post Author: dvd

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