Malaysian Shrimp in Shallot Chile Sauce

  • Active Time 20m
  • Total Time 20m

Serves 4

Red jalapenos are used in this sambal udang, but if you prefer less spice, use red bell peppers instead. Shrimp paste, which comes in blocks and is almost pink in color, has an intense aroma and flavor; it should always be used sparingly as it is here. Candlenuts are indigenous to Malaysian cooking. Hard and high in oil, they should never be eaten raw. However, when cooked, they are fine and add richness and body to sauces. Macadamia nuts are the suggested substitute.


  • 1-inch cube tamarind pulp
  • 3/4 cup hot water

  • 10 small shallots, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 4 ounces red jalapeno, stemmed, seeded
  • 1/3 cup canola or peanut oil
  • 4 candlenuts, smashed (or substitute macadamia nuts)
  • 1 teaspoon shrimp paste, optional
  • 1 pound shrimp, peeled, deveined

  • Thinly sliced cucumber
  • Steamed jasmine rice


Stir the tamarind pulp into 3/4 cup hot water until dissolved. Strain the seeds from the tamarind mixture; reserve the juice.

Combine the shallots, jalapenos, oil, candlenuts and shrimp paste in a blender. Puree until smooth.

Heat a heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the pureed shallot mixture and stir until the oil separates from the solids, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook 1 minute. Add the reserved tamarind juice and continue cooking until the shrimp is cooked through, about 1 minute longer. Season to taste with salt and sugar.

Serve the shrimp with cucumber and jasmine rice.

Recipe created exclusively for by Robert Danhi and Estrellita Leong-Danhi.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Publisher. All rights reserved.

RecID 4763

nutrition information per serving

534 calories; 23g total fat; 172mg cholesterol; 175mg sodium; 52g carbohydrates; 1g fiber; 29g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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