Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Fried Kembung (Mackerel) With Assam Sauce

Cooking with Fried Kembung (Mackerel) and Assam Sauce evokes a journey of flavors and nostalgia. Have you ever wandered through the bustling wet markets or strolled the aisles of a hypermarket, catching glimpses of the humble boiled kembung? Perhaps you've even taken home this unassuming fish, its potential yet to be unlocked in your kitchen.


There's a certain beauty in the simplicity of this dish - a beauty that lies in its uncomplicated nature and the rich flavors it offers. Boiled kembung, or mackerel as Google kindly translates, is a fish steeped in saltwater, readily available at local markets and hypermarkets alike. But before diving into the cooking process, a gentle rinse and thorough pat-dry are essential to maintain the fish's integrity during frying. Careful attention to these details ensures a crisp exterior without sacrificing the tender flesh within.

As the fish sizzles in the pan, take advantage of the moments in between to prepare a medley of aromatics - ginger, onion, fiery chili padi or red chilies, and fragrant kaffir lime leaves. These ingredients, when combined with the tangy sweetness of assam sauce, elevate the dish to new heights of flavor complexity.


Fried Kembung with Assam Sauce is not just a dish; it's a celebration of Malaysian culinary heritage. Its appetizing aroma and vibrant flavors make it a hero dish on any dining table. And of course, no meal is complete without a serving of steamed rice to soak up every last drop of the delectable sauce.


So, take a culinary journey with Fried Kembung and Assam Sauce. Let each bite transport you to the heart of Malaysia, where flavors reign supreme and simplicity is celebrated. Experience the magic for yourself, and you'll understand why this dish holds a special place in the hearts of Malaysians everywhere.



4 pieces boiled kembung, fried

2 tbsp assam (tamarind), diluted in water and strained for juice

1 inch ginger, chopped

1 medium-sized onion, chopped

4 bird's eye chilies, chopped

3 kaffir lime leaves, shredded

A pinch of salt

Powdered palm sugar (gula Melaka), to taste


Merge all the ingredients for the Assam Sauce with a dynamic flourish, harmonizing their bold flavors to create a crescendo of Malaysian culinary delight.

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