I love this! A special sambal from the state of Pahang.
It doesn't look appetizing being black, but for those of you who like having a sprinkling of spicy crispiness, you will enjoy this a lot on your rice and noodles!
I made this as a condiment with noodles and we piled it on. My MIL who was intending to fly back to US asked me to make a big portion for her to bring along.
|typo: Should be 'bilimbi' not belimbi|
The ingredient in this sambal that makes it black is the bilimbi (belimbing buluh, kamias, tree sorrel). It adds a touch of fruitiness to the sambal and is easily available in KK. I also know that some bloggers like Veronica (in Klang Valley) and Alan (Singapore) has easy access to these fruits. Some recipes call for boiling the bilimbi until it's dry and black before use, but I am glad that the recipe I am using today calls for fresh bilimbi. My sambal is just as black as those that parboiled the bilimbi.
I read in a few recipes saying that the original ones does not use sugar. I tasted it and yeah, it doesn't need any. I like it being salty, spicy and crispy. There's a light tinge of tang there, which comes from the bilimbi and it makes it extra special. But if you have tasted it and find you like it having some sweetness, go ahead and add some, but make sure you add it when it's almost ready, when the anchovies have turned crispy, if not, the sugar will burn before it's time to dish up.
Sambal Hitam Pahang
100gm dried anchovies (ikan bilis)
100gm belimbi (belimbing buluh/belimbing asam)
25gm bird’s eye chilli
2 red onions
Salt to taste
Sugar if needed
1. Rinse anchovies, drain and coarsely pound them (You can either mill, or use a food processor). Set aside.
2. Grind shallots and bird’s eye chilli together. Set aside.
3. Grind belimbi and set aside
4. Thinly slice red onions.
5. Heat a wok on medium heat and put in oil. Cook onions until it looks translucent and soft. Put in shallot chilli mixture. And cook until it looks slightly golden.
6. Put in anchovies and cook until it looks lightly golden and seems dry. *
7. Put in belimbi paste and turn heat to low, cook until the mixture turns dark brown and crispy.**
*Taste it after step 6 to determine whether salt is needed. Different types of anchovies, different levels of saltiness. The sambal should be very slightly oversalted. I used 1/3 tsp salt.
**Taste it after you add in the belimbi paste to determine whether sugar is needed. I didn’t put any.
Look at the crispy anchovy shreds! It's quite addictive! You can make more and keep.
This recipe yields about 1 cup of sambal, just like in the pictures.