Sambal Belacan – 参巴峇拉煎酱

Sambal belacan is the foundation of many Malay dishes. Learning how to make this crowd pleaser will definitely earn you some points with friends and family.

Now, what do we look for in a good jar of sambal belacan? It is crucial to toast the belacan paste until it emits a strong smell – after you get through the initial “stink up the kitchen” stage, what follows is an immense fragrance! Add some fresh chilies, aromatics and fresh lime juice to the mix and you’ve got yourself a wonderful keepsake!

This lovely condiment can be kept in the fridge and used in stirfrys, as a topping for soup dishes or even as a condiment. Go make yourself a jar now!

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  • Servings: 4

  • Time: 15 min

  • Skill: Easy


  1. 30g belacan (shrimp paste)

  2. 5 fresh red chilies

  3. 10 fresh chili padis

  4. 30g galangal (blue ginger)

  5. 4 shallots

  6. Juice from 15-20 calamansi (golden lime)

  7. 2 tsp sugar (adjust to preference)

  8. 1 tsp salt (adjust to preference)


  1. Toast 30g belacan (shrimp paste) in a pan and break them up into small pieces

  2. Stir fry till fragrant then set aside

  3. To food processor add

  4. 5 fresh red chilies, 10 fresh chili padis, 30g galangal (blue ginger), 4 shallots, Juice from 15-20 calamansi (golden lime), 2 tsp sugar (adjust to preference) and 1 tsp salt (adjust to preference)

  5. Blend slightly then add in toasted belacan

  6. Blend till smooth

  7. Serve with calamansi (golden lime)