The Man and I cooked dinner for his relatives last night. I made this local salad a.k.a. ulam with fresh coconut sambal to offset the hot sambal fried chicken. I love this salad. It's one of my favourites. It's a combination of my mother and mother-in-law's recipe. They're both from Johor so... yeah :)
This recipe uses pestle and mortar for pounding, so, depending on the amount, you might have to do it in batches.
2) 3 - 4 red chillies - chopped and deseeded is you don't want it too hot
3) A small handful dried anchovies - washed and strained
4) 2 medium sized red onions or shallots - sliced
5) 2 handfuls grated fresh coconut
6) 2-3 tablespoon thick tamarind juice
- Roughly chop greens and set aside - Selom shoots are recommended but I used ulam Raja because those weren't available.
- Pound the chillies into juicy paste.
- Add generous pinch of sugar, salt + anchovies. Continue pounding into paste.
- Add coconut - using a spoon, mix and pound alternately to release some coconut juice and to combine with the chili. Do NOT pound to a paste.
- Add onions - mix and pound alternately again only to release some juice. Do NOT pound to a paste.
- Add tamarind juice and mix.
- Add more salt, sugar or tamarind juice to taste if necessary.
I like mine when I can taste a bit of everything - the coconut milk, the onions, salty, sweet and sour. And no overpowering taste of the anchovies. It takes a bit of experimenting so you're gonna have to use your taste buds as guide.
Chill in fridge.
Serve - Some people like to mix the coconut sambal and the ulam but I prefer to keep them separate like in the pic. It allows my guests to take a combination of whatever amount suits them. I like to pile mine on :)