Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Acar awak recipe
Acar awak recipe adapted from Florence Tan
This recipe is absolutely tantalizing and bursting with the aroma of spices. It is a Nyonya pickled vegetable dish that can be eaten with rice or on its own as an appetizer. The dish is very pleasing on the palate and you get a combination of sweet, sour, salty, spicy and the crunch from the roasted peanuts. Furthermore, it can be stored in the refrigerator for about 1 week so any leftovers are not wasted. The only downside is the prep; it involves cutting up the vegetables, making and frying the rempah and blanching/scalding each vegetable separately in a vinegar solution. Nevertheless, the outcome is extremely rewarding so I'll definitely be making this again.
225g cucumber, seeded and cut into 0.3cm wide strips of 3cm length (425-500g) -rub with 1tbsp salt into the cucumber strips and leave aside for 1 hour. Place marinated cucumber strips on a piece of muslin cloth and squeeze out as much liquid as possible. Spread the cucumber out on a try and sun for 2-3 hours. This makes it crunchy. (optional)
185g carrot peeled and cut into 0.3cm wide strips and 3cm length
350g cabbage, cut into small pieces/2.5cm squares
250 cauliflower florets
10 long beans cut into 3cm
15 french beans stringed and cut into 3cm
1 red chilli halved lengthways and seeded
1 green chilli halved lengthways and seeded
100g dried shrimp soaked in water and finely chopped
2 1/2 tsp salt
175g sugar (This was way too much, I added about 3/4 and even extra vinegar at the end)
75ml vinegar (I used about 125ml)
275g peanuts, roasted and coarsely pounded
4 tbsp sesame seeds, roasted
600ml water 400ml vinegar 2tbsp salt 2tbsp sugar
Spice paste (finely grounded):
20 dried chillies, soaked in water and drained (I used 23) 20 shallots 3 cloves garlic (1 bulb) 3.5-4cm turmeric 3.5-4cm galangal 2 tsp belacan 3-4 stalks lemongrass 6 candlenuts
1)Bring water, vinegar, salt and sugar for scalding vegetables to a rapid boil. Blanch the vegetables, one type at a time: 1 min for turnip, 45 secs for cucumber (?2-3 secs for cucumber, 8-10 secs for other veg), 3 mins for carrots, 30secs for cabbage, 1 minute for cauliflower, 1 minute for long beans, 1 min for French beans, 15secs for chillies. Squeeze the cucumber and cabbage to get rid of excess water. Drain vegetables at once in a colander and set aside to cool.
2) Heat the cooking oil and sauté the dried shrimp until fragrant. Remove and drain.
3) In the same oil, sauté the spice paste until fragrant. Add the dried shrimp. Season with salt, sugar and 75ml vinegar. Adjust seasoning. Bring to boil and switch off the heat.
4) Add blanched vegetables, half of the peanuts and sesame seeds. Stir well and leave to cool.
5) When thoroughly cool, stir in the remaining peanuts and sesame seeds. Put in airtight container and store in the refrigerator.