Balinese Raw Salsa (Sambal Matah Bali) Recipe: Raw and Spicy, Perfect Combo!

Still can’t get enough of Balinese cuisine? Sad not, my friend. We’ll help you explore more of it here. This time, we’ll give you a recipe of a famous raw sambal from this Island of Gods.

Sambal matah is also known as raw shallot & lemongrass sambal. This sambal is a perfect condiment for grilled fish or chicken. Just like other Indonesians, Balinese loves to use terasi (shrimp paste), which is one of the ingredients of this sambal.

Though sambal is usually translated as chili sauce, sambal matah is so unlike the idea of chili sauce. It is more appropriate to be translated as a salsa; its making method is simply to gather all the ingredients, do some chopping and tossing and mixing everything into a nice lovely mess, just like salsa.

15 shallots, finely sliced or diced
4 cloves garlic, finely sliced
15 bird’s eye chilies, finely sliced
5 kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon terasi (shrimp paste), sauté about 30 seconds until fragrant
4 stalks lemon grass, take only the white and tender part, bruised and finely sliced
2 tablespoons fresh kaffir lime juice
1 teaspoon salt to taste
1 teaspoon sugar to taste

  1. Prepare a medium-size bowl. Place all the ingredients, except the lime juice, into the bowl. Mix well until evenly distributed.
  2. Add lime juice; stir again until all ingredients are evenly mixed.
  3. Your sambal matah is now ready to be served. Nothing’s as easy as this, right?


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