Let me see…

Normally, I would eat tempuyak (fermented durian) as it is…as a dip with ikan bilis (dried anchovies) or with rice. I have tried cooking prawns with it before, and also fish…and I hear that some people fry it with shallots, chili and ikan bilis too. The other day, however, I stumbled upon this recipe and I thought I could give it a try…and see if it was any good. Of course, being one who cannot follow recipes, I decided to just grasp the idea and went about it my own way.

I got the ingredients ready…

Sambal tempuyak - ingredients

- a handful of ikan bilis and pounded one shallot – peeled & sliced,  one chili, sliced…and a little bit of kunyit (tumeric) – not in the photo, a little bit of belacan (dried prawn paste) and lengkuas (galangal)…and bruised the end of one stalk of serai (lemon grass).

First, I fried the ikan bilis in a little bit of oil till golden brown before throwing in the pounded ingredients and the serai and finally, I added three scoops of tempuyak. It seemed kind of dry and since I did not have any santan (coconut milk), I just used a little bit of fresh milk and pretty soon, it was ready…

STP's sambal tempuyak

So, was it nice? Hmmm…I would say it was – very pleasingly fragrant with all the ingredients used but unfortunately, I think that drowned out the smell of the durian. It went very well with rice too…but personally, I think tempuyak is best eaten on its own.

Moving away from the main topic of this post, I just want to add here that if anyone is thinking about what to buy and serve to family and friends who will drop by during Chinese New Year, this is a good option – the kerepek gunting

Kerepek gunting

…or if you translate that, it means crisps cut with scissors. These are sold at my regular Malay kuih stall at Bandong here in packets, each containing more than enough to fill a bottle or two – those in which people usually keep their cookies and leave them on their coffee tables in their sitting rooms for guests to help themselves. They’re savoury, and just a little bit spicy and so very fragrant with the curry leaves and all the other ingredients used…and the best part is – they are only RM5.00 a packet. Considering the prices of cookies they are selling all over these days, I think I would rather have these anytime.

Gosh!!! How time flies and Chinese New Year is just two weeks away! Have you got everything ready yet?

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32 thoughts on “Let me see…

  1. i’m a bit scared of tempoyak, i’m not sure i’d dare to eat it on its own. on the other hand, kerepek gunting looks fun, and it sounds like a great name for this snack :D yikes, i’m totally not prepared for CNY yet! but i am looking forward to quality time with the family :D

    That would be in Malacca, I guess. Oooo…lots of goodies waiting for you there, I’m sure. You’re from there and you’re not into tempoyak? I thought everybody from there would have that Peranakan influence even if they’re not baba or nyonya themselves and would eat this and cincaluk and belacan – all the exotic stuff, my favourite. Yum! Yum!

  2. Never had tempoyak before, not sure if we could find it in Penang too, but how does it tastes? sweet as usual? or a mix of saltiness?

    Good grief! You’re in Penang and you never had tempoyak? Very hard to describe – you will just have to go out and taste it for yourself. The Malays there love cooking ikan patin with it. I prefer prawns and I don’t like patin – the smell of the fat puts me off.

  3. OMG!OMG!OMG!… TEMPOYAK! Drooling big time here, man.. banjir satu Auckland!!!! I love kerepek gunting too, once you start memang cannot stop. So nice can just buy and so cheap somemore than having to make it yourself :(

    Hahahahahahaha!!!! This is torture, eh? :D Ya…we’ve placed our order for the kerepek – will collect right before Chinese New Year. RM5, NZ$2…who would want to make one’s own, hor? Yum! Yum! Yum! ;)

  4. Fried tempuyak with santan? It must be very moist. I’d still prefer the Tempuyak fried with prawns. My top favourite. hehe. Chinese New year is coming soon, I bet you are now busy preparing for the celebration. :-D

    Yes, me too…with udang galah, very nice!!! Not really, as usual, we keep it simple – just get some things ready for anyone who cares to drop by. You’re not coming back to Sibu then, are you?

  5. The kerepek gunting is lovely with the curry leaves. The ones I find in KL are quite stingy with the curry leaves.

    Maybe they’re more expensive there, the curry leaves.

  6. I don’t think we have any Tempoyak in KL or Penang. I am always attracted to the unique and exotic food eaten in Borneo. Is this Tempoyak a tribal food? I know I will love anything durian!!

    I am mentally ready for CNY celebrations. Red packets ready, just need to wait for the crispy new bank notes to roll out.

    Tempuyak tribal? No, not really. I certainly do not think so. If you google “ikan masak tempoyak”, you will see a whole lot of people blogging about it – West Malaysians. I think it is a whole lot more popular there than here.

    New bank notes? I got mine Friday – privilege banking. Commoners – 29th & 30th. Muahahahahahaha!!!!!!! :D

    • Never tried any tempuyak before, not that adventurous. ;(.

      You don’t know what you’re missing… Eat a bit only, cubit-cubit or mix with rice, not like eating fresh durians.

      • See the millionaire Mayor in Sibu gets all the privilege even the banks will deliver the new notes to his house. So nice to be rich and famous to enjoy such facilities. Oh 29th & 30th new notes finito already cos STP zaps all of them.

        No lah, they pity this old man – how to compete with the young and energetic on the actual days – sure kena push masuk longkang. No worries, I could only afford to change RM1 notes – still got lots more…RM5, RM10, RM50, RM100…I am sure they have enough for the amount you want to change. Hehehehehehe!!!!!

  7. I only get to eat tempoyak when my malay colleagues bring it to the office… they usually have fried fish to go with that… sedap! I like though many do not like the smell… hahaha…
    Concerning the CNY… I have washed the curtains..now waiting for my kids to help me to re-arrange the furniture.. lots to be done and so little time… :)

    Ahhhh!!! Bet you can’t wait for the children to get home. Must be lonely without them around. Still two weeks to go – my missus has made a few types of cookies and that’s about it. Just keep it simple, no need for all the hassle.

    You like tempuyak? Wow!!! That’s good. Certainly a change from your usual response when it comes to this kind of stuff. Nice, eh? I like… ;)

    • Today accomplished much in the house.. phew.. at least the tedious ones are done.. another two weeks.. yes! The reunion and the food makes me excited only.. :)

      So early!!! No need for a week – just a couple of days, you can see a layer of dust on everything already. Such a nuisance. I will do it say around two days before the day.

  8. Prefer to eat durians on its own. If made into tempoyak…no thanks!. Kerepek gunting looks good, very cripsy. Would love that for CNY.

    Have a great weekend, Arthur.

    You haven’t tried my tempuyak prawns yet. Sure you will change your mind. Will end up cooking every weekend. Hehehehehe!!!!

    • Hahaha!!!…quite true. Like the assam fish, lost count of how many times I cook liaw. Just recently I cooked again. Yum!!!…Yum!!!…

      We just had it on Friday – my missus cooked bawal hitam (or chio). Now that she has learnt to cook it like this, she cooks it very often also. So easy mah…no hassle and the best thing is it’s very nice.

  9. I like tempoyak and have only eaten it as a condiment. I find it very appetizing. The dish you tried sounds good, perhaps if you added more tempoyak the smell would be more prominent. I haven’t seen that kerepek anywhere here and my favorite kerepek is kerepek pisang. I can down 1 whole packet all by myself :) I’m only starting to experiment with cookies for CNY. I reckon if I start later, the cookies will be fresher. Good excuse :)

    Aiyor!!!! Add more??? Precious commodity, not much…cannot simply use one. LOL!!! :D Must eat slowly bit by bit…savour and enjoy! :D I think my missus has finished making all her cookies except one more – cheese…and cakes, she will make a day or two before the actual day.

  10. Hahahhahah..I am with bananaz, not so adventurous with tempoyak. Once my colleague had it in office, I nearly fainted by the smell!!!! Eeeeeeee! !!

    Hahahahaha!!!! You, belacan already you do not eat…what more to say tempuyak or cincaluk. :D

  11. Too bad. I have forgotten how tempoyak tastes like. However, I remember I liked it when my uncle in Kuching cooked for us to try out many years ago. My mum is not into exotic foods, so never had it at home.

    Next time you come home, if I have any, I can pass you a bit… Hehehehehe!!!! Or I’ll cook the tempuyak prawns for you to try. ;)

  12. They sell kuih gunting??? Yums!!

    Different from Hiok’s but also very very nice. Not so much hay bee but makes up for that with the spices used and the curry leaves – very fragrant. Hiok’s not making any this year, I guess.

    • yup. Famous for patin masak tempoyak.

      Can fry ikan bilis with tempoyak too. But just add a little bit and it’s less “pekat” than your sambal there. :)

      They do that here in Sarawak, add cili too. I don’t like patin, too fat…and has a smell that puts me off. I’d rather cook with prawns.

  13. kerepek gunting sure seems crispy
    anyway, gunting means scissor on your language?
    ours too

    Many words the same or similar – lelaki, manok… Well, we’re neighbours, aren’t we? ;) But mahal here means expensive… :(

  14. I’m still thinking of what to make for CNY snacks! Any idea? :D

    I was thinking too… Wanted a theme but my missus started saying she would cook this and that – all not following the theme or any theme for that matter. In the end, I jsut told her to cook whatever she liked – no need for any theme. Tsk! Tsk!

  15. New notes already out on 22Jan in MBB as we checked with them one week before. This year was exceptionally early for Bananaz to do two things. Took a break from work, changed new notes on 23Jan and haircut there after. Normally its always on the vey last week with all the mad rush at the bank and waiting for the hairdresser.

    Wahhhhh!!!! You even special…so very early. I dunno about other banks here but the one near my house here – 29th & 30th. Haircut? Still so long to go, tak kira lah….must cut right before the actual day – buang sial.

  16. That looks very nice! :)

    I wonder if there’ll be any left when I come back. HAHAHA

    The kerepek gunting? Or the sambal tempuyak? I can get you the kerepek, no problem…but the sambal – I don’t think I would want to cook that again. Save the tempuyak for some other nicer dishes.

  17. I never try kerepek gunting before leh! ;D it sounds great anyway, can imagine the taste with curry leaves…Yummm!

    It is nice – something along the same line as murukku.

  18. Normally i like to eat durian on its own…

    Then we’re the direct opposite – don’t mind not eating it on its own but love it in all the other ways.

  19. Kerepek Gunting looks crispy and yummy. RM5 per pack is really cheap. I can buy ten and give it to my relatives, then I can retire to bed earlier, no need to bake my own cookies.

    I intend to do that too.

  20. kerepek gunting sure looks delicious..
    now in kl there are lots of new type of kerepek for the CNY..

    So what have you got? No post on your preparation? Or when the time comes, you just go back home to Ipoh – bring mouth and stomach…and eat only?

  21. Pingback: Love bites… | …Still crazy after all these years!

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