There is something about fermented durian flesh (tempoyak) that really makes me enjoy eating it. Some people find it strange that I don't eat the fresh durian flesh, but instead go for the fermented one, which wreaks a lot more odor, with gusto!
It seems like there is no specific time of the year for durian season nowadays because you can actually get durians at any time of the year. And with durians come plentiful supply of tempoyak. After using this delicacy in Asam dishes, I thought of trying it with something different; a sambal which usually uses leafy shoots from different types of plants. So, today, instead of shoots, I decided to try it with Patin!
- 750 g Patin, cut into manageable portions
- 1 handful of birds eye chilies
- 5 shallots
- 2 thumb size fresh turmeric
- 2 stalks lemongrass, sliced
- 3 pieces asam gelugor
- 3 cups coconut cream
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup tempoyak
- 1 turmeric leaf
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- Salt and sugar to taste
Season the fish with some turmeric powder and salt, then, fry until cooked. Set aside. Leave about three tbs of the frying oil in the pan and discard the rest.
Chiffonade the turmeric leaf and set aside. Blitz the birds eye chilies, shallots, fresh turmeric and lemon grass in a blender to a smooth paste. Heat the remaining frying oil in the pan and saute the blended ingredients until aromatic. Pour in the coconut cream and water, then stir in the tempoyak. Put in the asam gelugor and simmer until the sauce has thickened and is reduced by half. Add in the fried Patin, turmeric and season well. Allow to simmer to another minute or two. Serve immediately.