Sambal belacan is one of the famous Malaysian condiments. It is usually eaten with white rice together with other dishes. It makes the food nicer (or should i say spicier) and more appetizing. Also, the use of sambal belacan does not stops here. You can also use as one of the ingredients for your cooking to replace plain chillies. It will add more taste and flavour to the dish.

Traditional Sambal Belacan

Now, let's learn how to make sambal belacan the traditional way from scratch. Firstly, you'll need to have a stone mortar (like the one in the picture below). If you don't have one, don't fret, you can alternatively use food processor or a blender. It will do the task just as well. But then again, some old folks would tell you that using stone mortar will make all the difference. The taste and texture of the sambal belacan using stone mortar is far superior compared to the any electrical device. So if you've got the time, go find yourself a stone mortar:P

Things you'll need to prepare

Sambal Belacan Recipe

  • 8 fresh chillies
  • 1 inch cube shrimp paste (belacan)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 fresh kalamansi lime (limau kasturi)


1. Fry belacan in a kuali with a little oil.

2. Put fried belacan in a stone mortar and pound it together with salt and chillies.

3. Pound till all the seeds are fine. Optional, you can remove the seeds before pounding. Pound till the chillies are fine.

4. Squeeze 2 fresh kalamansi lime juice to the sambal belacan paste.

5. It is ready to be serve and eaten :D

Yummy, sambal belacan :)

Preparation time: 10 mins

a) To prevent the chillies from splashing all over the place during pounding, put a piece of plastic on top of the stone mortar or use your hand to cover the top opening of the mortar.
b)For storage, put the sambal belacan paste in a clean container in the refridgerator. It can last about a week.
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