You’re not Malay if you don’t know and don’t eat sambal tumis. Sambal is generic for any kind of chilli paste or condiment but sambal tumis is like a chilli jam. And I know that every family has their own version.
What I made yesterday was the plain sambal tumis that is just the base that is delicious eaten with nasi lemak or mixed with prawns, ikan bilis (dried anchovies), boiled eggs, etc.
I’ve always been intimidated making this because I know I can’t reach the same standards as Mom. But yesterday, I was surprised. Taste wise it was exactly like Mom’s but texture wise, it was not as smooth as I’d like it to be, and it was waaaayyy too hot! Next time, I’d reduce the number of chillies and boil the dried chillies for an hour to make them super soft. 🌶 🌶 🌶
Recipe of sorts
1. About twenty or more dried chillies, snipped and boiled till soft
2. 2-3 failry large onions
3. 3-4 garlic cloves
4. 1-2 tsp of belacan (toasted shrimp paste)
Blend till super fine. Add to hot oil and pn low heat, cook till oil appears at the top. Continue simmering till chilli paste is cooked. Add about three tablespoons of sugar, 1 tsp of salt and two tablespoons or so of tamarind water. Taste and adjust sugar, tamarind water to your preference. My preferred taste is sweet but not too sweet with a tangy taste.