Wednesday, August 22, 2012

My First Sambal Belimbing Prawns

I did it! I finally made an all traditional Nonya dish. :) I have to say it didn't come as easy as I thought. But somehow all the pieces just fall in place. *thank goodness* Let me elaborate. I was invited to join the Melaka Food Festival (I'm sure many of you are) for the month of August. I was really keen and eager, with plans to make some nonya kuihs. But then I told myself, why not make something out of the norm (for me), a savoury dish perhaps. So I started reading recipes online, browsed through books I owned. But sadly I have never made any of those dishes before, and thus was alittle hesitant to try, for fear that it might turn out tasting horrible.

Just over the weekend, some of the bloggers here in Singapore had a gathering and I was happy that I could join in. Prior to the gathering, Alan from travellingfoodies, had put up an offer to help harvest some belimbing fruit for those who might be interested to use it for cooking. Oh my gosh, of course I won't miss that! I could totally use that fruit for a nonya dish I read about! Belimbing is pretty rare here in Singapore...well at least I don't know where to get it, hahaha! So I have to thank Alan for passing me this precious fruit and thus making my first submission to MFF possible! Sounds a little dramatic, but it's true, haha! If you have not visited Alan's site before, you have better make your way there has so many authentic nonya dishes that will make any nonya mama proud!

Okay back to my post. I have to say I am quite proud of the dish I made. My virgin attempt on a savoury nonya dish has really (fortunately too) turned out delicious. Sambal Belimbing Prawns:))
I believe this is also the first spicy dish that is posted here in HBS! Having two young kids at home just doesn't allow much opportunities for me to try out spicy dishes. :P *excuses!* Anyway, my kid did give this dish a small bite....she said "Mama...this is very nice...hah...hah...hah...too spicy!" The rest is history, hahaha!
The "venture" to getting this dish didn't stop just then. I was tight down with other matters over the weekend and didn't get a chance to get the other necessary ingredients needed for this dish, namely kaffir lime leaves, belacan, dried chilis and prawns. :P And I began to worry that those belimbing that Alan pass to me will not stay fresh so long. But luckily my MIL had some belacan to spare and my SIL had some dried red chilis as well. And just yesterday, Joyce from Kitchen Flavours posted her Sambal Belimbing Prawns. I was like "Goodie! Now I have a good and trusty recipe I can follow!" I know, what are the odds? I have to say, I'm really lucky that all these came in place at the right time to make it all possible, haha!

I adapted Joyce's recipe and made slight modification which I used ready made dried chili paste instead of going through the process of soaking and blending it. It is so much more convenient to me! *lazy me* You can get these ready made dried red chili paste at any supermarkets. ;)
Ingredients for Sambal Belimbing Prawns (Serves 4 pax)
350g fresh medium prawns
3 tbsp dried chili paste (Or you can use 30g dried chili, soaked till soft)
6 cloves of shallots
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp amount of belacan (shrimp paste)
10 belimbing fruits, sliced 3 pieces kaffir lime leaves
1 medium tomato, sliced to wedges
1 medium red onion, sliced to wedges
1/4 cup water, or more
1.5 tsp sugar
salt to taste
1/3 cup cooking oil
  • Remove the shells from the prawns, devined them. Marinate the prawns in 1 tsp of sugar and set aside for use later.
  • Blend the chili paste, garlic, shallots in the spice blender till ti combines to a smooth paste. Set aside for later use.
  • In a saute pan, heat up the cooking oil and add the paste in. Stir fry for 5 to 8 minutes till fragrant. Add in the kaffir lime leaves and continue to stir fry for another couple minutes.
  • Now add in the onions and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add in the sliced belimbing fruit and the water. Stir till combined and cover the lid for a minute
  • Lastly add in the tomato wedges and prawns. Give it a stir, making sure the prawns are cooked and add sugar and salt to taste.
  • Dish up and serve while still hot. Yum!
Overall a very flavourful eaten with a plate (or two) of warm steamy rice. :)) The sourish taste from the belimbing is not over powering but it tickles yout taste buds and makes you crave for more! The sweetness from the prawns compliments the whole dish very well, super delish! Now I wish I have more belimbing! Hahaha! I am so glad I made this, it somehow made me realise this kind of dishes are not so "intimdating". :))

Again, thanks to all that has helped me make this dish possible in my very own kitchen. ;)

This goes with out saying but I am proud to submit this to Malaysian Food Fest, Melaka (August) hosted by Yummylittlecooks and organized by Wendy of Table For 2.....Or More. Yay!

Have a great day all! Now go cook something nonya. ;D


kitchen flavours said...

Yay! Definitely Yay!! You did well, seeing that this is your first Nyonya Dish! Nobody would have known! Looks delicious! The belimbing that Alan gave you are the lighter ones, a different variety but the same in taste! I'm glad that you have enjoyed your Sambal Belimbing Prawns! Thumbs up! Did you add rice? Haha, the leftover is delicious made into a sandwich with some thin slices of cucumber! Yum! Sometimes I cook more, so that I have leftover for sandwich the next morning!
I'm really glad that you had the opportunity to try out the belimbing, it is rather special and the younger generation nowadays are ignorant of this precious fruit!
Have a great delicious week!

Mich Piece of Cake said...

Wow, this looks so delicious! Well done! I would love to have this with a bowl of rice, to mop up all that spicy sauce.

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Hahaha, thanks Joyce! Your recipe is gooooood! So yummy! Indeed I really have no clue what is a belimbing until last couple weeks, haha. I am so so glad I made this dish. Ooohh, the left over with sandwich sounds good too, tempting, hahaha! Next time I make sure I make more. Thanks again Joyce! :))

WendyinKK said...

I can feel your joy and am happy to share the joy with you.
Now I know of one more dish to cook with those belimbing. It's quite easy to find here at the market, but you can always call up Alan for more, hahaha!
Thank you for participating and trying something new.

Anonymous said...

I'm honoured to be able to contribute to the joy of the very many firsts in your blog! first nonya dish! first spicy dish! first belimbing dish! wow! LOL

Thanks for making the effort to join in the fun at Melaka Month for the Malaysian Food Fest!

ann low said...

Mmmm... really makes my mouth watering. Look so yummy delicious!!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Mich, I have the same thought too! Thanks! :))

Wendy, thanks for sharing this joy, heehee. :) ai ya, I already quite pai seh asking the belimbing from Alan leh. But I think I can ask him where to buy lah, heehee. Looking forward to seeing your post. :))

Alan, thanks again ya. You have definitely open up a new door to me on this nonya cuisine, and I truly thankful. :)) pai seh, like so new, everything also first time, haha!

Honey Bee Sweets said...

Thanks Ann!

Zoe said...

A big Yay from me too! Your Nonya dish looks really good! I was emailing Joyce and Lena about MFF asking them what should I cook for this event and I have not done anything yet...Ops!

Veronica said...

So delicious and just looking at your photo made me drool now. What I need is a bowl of plain rice to go with your scrumptious dish! Well done!

HK said...

look so tempting !!
How about add some petai ? :o)

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

I also can feel your joy, BB! Frankly i have never try putting belimbing into any cooking except i used to wrap it with Vietnamese spring roll last time. So how many plate of rice you finished off with this yummy sambal huh? hehehe..

Passionate About Baking said...

Sometimes, it's amazing how things fall in place! Your sambal belimbing prawns looks very delicious! I can what you meant when you have two young girls who don't eat spicy food. Another achievement for you! :)

lena said...

bee!! how nice seeing a nyonya dish from you! after seeing joyce's post on the belimbing dish, i was on the lookout for belimbing..not that i want to cook it now but want to see the fruit again. I probably have seen it before.I'm sure this is one very appetising dish, i love curries, assam and all those kind of sour spicy food! thumbs up for your dish!!

鲸鱼蓝蓝蓝 said...


My Little Space said...

Bee, I missed having sambal belimbing. It's been a long time since I last had them. Slurpppp.... Would be perfect to go with nasi lemak as well. :o)
Hope you're having a fabulous weekend, dear.