“Musty” and “delicious” shouldn’t go in the same sentence, but it does here, tasting somewhere between the flavours of cuttlefish and raw ikan bilis. The spiciness of the chilli boh really lifts yet grounds the dish.
"Musty with a pleasantly chewy texture."
3 garlic cloves
1½ inch ginger
1 inch fresh turmeric
4 Tbs vegetable oil
150g dried squid, the small variety (sometimes labeled as “kepala sotong”), soaked 6 hours, drained, cleaned
100g dried chillies, soaked at least an hour, blended into chilli boh (we used fresh in the photo, you can too)
2 inch ball of asam jawa, mixed with water, pulp and seeds strained
1 Tbs sugar
Heat vegetable oil in a wok. Once hot, add the pounded ingredients and fry until the onions become transparent.
Stir in the chilli boh and leave to fry until it starts to bubble and the oil is released. Add sugar and pour in the asam jawa juice.
Cook for 2 minutes then add the squid. Mix everything well and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Season with salt. Tasting is very important here – the dried squid is a little salty to begin with, so do not add too much salt. Serve as the sambal for your nasi lemak, or with plain white rice.