Sunday, November 13, 2005

Belacan Fine Beans

Remembered that I had some Belacan Bakar (Baked Shrimp Paste) lying around. Apa lagi ... more fun with experimental cooking lah!

I usually throw in ingredients at random and hope it turns out OK, but this time it was different. For once, I worked in the correct order - started off with having a certain concoction of flavours in mind, and working towards it by selecting the apropriate ingredients.

I decided that beans with belacan had to be somewhat savoury, a little saltish, a little sweet, and more on the spicy side. Couldn't find the long beans I'm used to, but spotted some Fine Beans from Kenya, with are smaller, crunchier, and has less of that 'raw vege' taste that comes with the usual long beans. Perfect.

For the savoury and saltish components, some Salted Fish would have been nice, but I decided to use the left over smoked mackerel (which has been in the fridge a little too long). Added soya sauce for extra saltiness.

Some dried baby prawns and Gula Melaka would have been perfect for infusing that bold, aromatic sweetness. Since that's hard to find, a pinch of sugar will have to do. I never liked using sugar for cooking, so I used less than what was needed, and compensated with more wholesome stuff like onions, mince meat, chopped up carrots, and a little oyster sauce.

And finally, for the spiciness? Dried Bird-eye Chilli. Lots of it! And a little fresh ground black pepper.

Yumm.. served with piping hot rice and Teh O' Peng! Feels like I'm back home in Malaysia again. Good ol' belacan.


At November 14, 2005 4:52 pm, Blogger KY said...

don't make me hungry at 1am again!

At November 14, 2005 7:11 pm, Blogger shawnchin said...


I'll try to publish around dinner time next time ;)


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