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Sambal Goreng Cumi-Cumi (Fried Squid in Red Chilli Sauce)

Sambal Goreng Cumi-Cumi (Squid in Red Chilli Sauce)


  • 1 kg (2 lb) squid
  • 1 tbs white vinegar
  • 5 kemiri (candle-nuts)
  • 6 large red chillies, seeded
  • 6 shallots, or 1 onion
  • 1 slice terasi (optional)
  • 2 tsp ginger powder
  • a pinch of ground cumin
  • a pinch of turmeric
  • a pinch of lemon grass (powdered)
  • 2 tsp cooking oil
  • 3 tbs tamarind water
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • salt
  • 150 ml (¼ pint) water

How to Cook

Clean the squid and throw away the ink sac and the head. Chop the tentacles into pieces about 1 cm (½”) long. Then cut up the squid into small squares, and rinse all the pieces in 1 tablespoon of white vinegar diluted with 600 ml (1 pint) of cold water. strain off the water immediately.

Pound the kemiri, Chillies, shallots and terasi until blended into a smooth paste. Add the ginger, cumin, turmeric and lemon grass. Saute this paste in the oil for 1 minute, add the squid and tamarind water, and saute for 3 more minute. Add the sugar, salt and water. Continue cooking for 5 or 6 minutes, stirring frequently. Serve hot.

to serve four to six

people connect the name ‘Sambal‘, quite rightly, with the hot relishes that are so popular in Indonesia. However, many kinds of sambal are in fact main dishes, and this is one of them. It needs to be good and red, so if you think that even seeded red chillies are going to make it too hot, use paprika or red pimientos instead.

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