The other day while waiting for the school day to end, I was talking casually with one of my colleague about on famous Malay dish that is Asam Pedas. According to her, there are many different types of Asam Pedas and that they all vary in taste and thickness. I was so used to the usual ones that my late mother used to prepare and now the ones that my wife frequently prepares.
This colleague of mine hails from Melaka and so when she says that she know a thing or two about Asam Pedas, I knew she was being very modest. After exchanging ideas on how to prepare the ultimate Asam Pedas, she finally shared one with me; a recipe which I have never really tasted and was eager to try. And so today, I decided to give her recipe a try. Thanks Kak Mariya!
1 small ikan patin
1 stalk vietnamese mint
1 small torch ginger bud
1 tbs fresh ground black pepper
4 tbs dried chili paste
4 cloves garlic
1 small piece shrimp paste ( very small piece!)
1 small piece galangal, bruised
1 tbs toasted coconut (kerisek)
tamarind juice (I used less to make a thick gravy)
As usual, grind the spices (chili, shallots, garlic, shrimp paste and black pepper). Heat some oil in a pot and saute the spice mix. When the spice mix is cooked, pour in tamarind juice (enough to cover the pieces of patin) When mixture is boiling put in the fish, vietnamese mint and torch ginger. Finally add in the 'kerisek' and season to taste.
P.S. This Asam Pedas is a new high for me because after having the dish for lunch, I found myself slurping the leftover bowl of gravy like soup!