Monday, January 9, 2017

Nyonya Nasi Lemak With Dried Cuttlefish Sambal Tumis With A Twist

It is the start of 2017 and I have already started eating artery clogging goodness :p.  I had a sudden crave for homecooked Nasi Lemak.  Nasi Lemak is a Malay fragrant rice dish cooked in coconut milk together with screwpine leaves and served with anchovies sambal and hard boiled eggs and cucumber.  Nasi Lemak can be served in a variety of ways and is a popular breakfast dish for most Malaysians.  But for us, we had it for lunch and dinner :)

Hubby and I love nasi lemak served with dried cuttlefish sambal tumis and since I had this craving that won't go away, I cooked it for our lunch few days ago :) and guess what !  We had nasi lemak for lunch and dinner.  With the ready to cook soaked cuttlefish, cooking this sambal tumis is not difficult at all.   Anyway , a good homecooked meal to start the year.   Nyonya  nasi lemak/coconut milk rice recipe is from Sonia and the Cuttlefish sambal tumis is from Patsy'sKitchen with a twist.

I prepared the chilli paste the night before...pound together
dried chilli (soaked for an hour), garlic, onion, ginger and belacan

fry the chilli paste mixture in rice bran oil till fragrant,
once oil surface, add in the tamarind paste and brown sugar 

add in the red onion slices and the cuttlefish pieces 

fry  the anchovies in rice bran oil till crispy and crunchy
dish up and serve as a side dish for the nasi lemak

Nyonya Nasi Lemak With Dried Cuttlefish Sambal Tumis

Nasi Lemak /Coconut Rice

3 cups rice wash and change water 3 times, soak in water 30 mins
3 slices ginger, julienned
4 blades pandan leaves, knotted
2 cups water
1 cup coconut milk
1 tsp salt

Add 2 cups water with rice, mix with ginger and pandan leaves, steam over medium heat for 20 mins. Add salt with coconut milk. Add 1/3 of coconut milk into rice, fluff rice with chopsticks. Continue to steam for 5 mins. Add in the balance coconut milk, continue to steam for 5 mins. Remove steamer from heat and set aside.

Deep Fried Anchovies
70 g anchovies - remove gut and wash and wipe dry with paper towel

Deep fry anchovies in rice bran oil till golden brown. Dish up and side aside.

Other side dishes
Hard Boiled Eggs - cut into halves
Blanch Lady Fingers or slice cucumber

Dried Cuttlefish Sambal Tumis

2 pieces of dried cuttlefish - refer to note on how to process dried cuttlefish * I bought ready to cook ones from Tesco
1 red onion sliced
30 g tamarind paste
1 tsp brown sugar / gula merah
1/4 cup rice bran oil
salt to taste

sambal paste - blend together
20 g dried chilli , cut into two, boiled in hot water for 5 mins
1 big onion
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 inch belacan ( shrimp paste )
2 slices of ginger


Heat up 1/4 cup oil in wok and once the oil is hot, add in chilli paste and saute till fragrant and oil and surface . Add in the tamarind paste and brown sugar . Add in the red onion slices and the cuttlefish pieces and continue to cook till the cuttlefish are cooked ( do not overcook the cuttlefish ,as the cuttlefish cook fast or it will be chewy ) The cuttlefish will release liquid so do not add water unless you want more gravy.  Add salt to taste. Dish up and serve with the nasi lemak ( coconut rice ) along side the hard boiled eggs and fried anchovies.

Serve nasi lemak with dried cuttlefish sambal tumis and half boiled eggs and deep fried anchovies

To process dried cuttlefish:

Soak cuttlefish with cold water preferably overnight until it has been reconstituted. Change the water(this water can be used as soup stock) and soak the cuttlefish with cold water which has 1 tbsp of potassium carbonate & sodium bi-carbonate solution(kan sui) added. The cuttlefish is ready when it is soft and double it's original size. At this stage the cuttlefish has to be soaked in plain cold water and change the water every 3 hours.


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