Saturday, January 21, 2012

Bali-Style Fresh Water Lobsters

Saturday is the day I usually do my marketing (which I also consider as a sort of therapy!) for one week's worth of foodstuff mainly fish, meat and vegetables, because the nearest shop from my house is about ten minutes walk.  I mention walk because my wife doesn't drive, and with me at school from 7.05 a.m. to about 3.30 p.m. every day, so it is quite impossible for me to do marketing on a daily basis.  

And so today (yesterday actually, since this is posted a day late! hehe), while looking around at the array of fish and shellfish (all insanely expensive due to the coming Chinese New Year!), I chanced upon a tray of fresh water lobsters (udang galah)  I don't fancy them but my family, especially my children, absolutely adore them!    
And as for the recipe, Negeri Sembilan style is to slather the crustacean with loads of thick coconut milk.  And since I have promised myself that I would use as less of this ingredient as possible, I surfed for alternative recipes and finally came upon one by Kak Nur of Secubit Garam.  Hers used chicken.  I thought that it wouldn't hurt if I used the lobsters instead, and I was right!  The sauce tasted a lot like 'Tiga Rasa'.  I have no complaints about that because, as usual, the main reaction comes from my critics and they liked the dish!  Thanks Kak Nur (I have made one or two minor alterations! hehe)

800g fresh water lobsters (udang galah!)
some salt and turmeric

1 inch galangal, julinned 
1 inch ginger, julienned
2 stalks lemon grass, thinly sliced
2 pieces kaffir lime leaves, julienned

3tbs chili paste
4 shallots, pounded
4 cloves garlic, pounded

2tbs sweet soy sauce
2tbs tomato ketchup
2tbs sweet chili sauce
1/2 cup tamarind juice
1tsp soft brown sugar

Season the lobsters with salt and turmeric and fry until half cooked.  Set aside.  Heat about four tablespoons of cooking oil (or you can use the same oil you used to fry the lobsters.  I did!) in a wok and saute the galangal, lemon grass, chili paste, shallot and garlic until fragrant.  Then stir in the ginger, sweet soy sauce, tomato ketchup, sweet chili sauce, tamarind juice and sugar.  Finally, add in the fried lobsters and cook for another minute before dishing out.  Serve hot!

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