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Friday Foods: My Traditional Comfort Foods

I’ve always told my mother that I’m a city girl with a healthy appreciation for the traditional Malay foods. It’s the simple dishes, simple snacks that I like best and my comfort foods are generally easy to make. At least to me, anyway.

One of the things that I love at any time of the day is fritters, dough fritters, with anchovies and onions. At a recent visit to my late granny’s house, I discovered a variation to the traditional sambal belacan that goes superbly well with the dough fritters and boiled tapioca, another of my favourite traditional food.

Anchovy Fritters

Naili's corner
Actually, this isn’t a picture of the anchovy fritters. It’s a picture of a variation of it, using over-riped bananas.
Photo by amrufm

2 cups of flour
1/2 cup dried anchovies, pounded or chopped roughly in the food processor
1 small onion, diced
1 egg
About 3-4 cups of water
oil for deep frying

Add in the egg and the onions together. Smoosh the egg and the onions together with you hand, to break the onion bits into the egg.

Into the flour, add the water bit by bit until it’s enough to give a batter that’s thick enough to spoon. Add in the egg and onion mix, and the anchovies and mix well.

Heat up the oil on medium heat and when it’s hot enough, drop spoonfuls of the batter into the oil and fry until it’s golden brown. Drain and serve it hot with your favourite sauce.

Here’s a video on a how to do it:

Sambal Belacan
The usual sambal belacan.
Photo by irwandy

The variation to the normal sambal belacan that I love to have with the anchovy fritters are easy to make and I usually make a big batch to last me a week or so.

Sambal Lonte

4 green chillies, roughly chopped
4 red chillies, rouphly chopped
2-4 chilli padi
4 shallots
1 clove garlic
a handful of dried anchovies
3-5g of toasted belacan
2-3tbs oil
salt to taste

Heat up oil in a pan. Toss in the chillies, shallots, garlic, belacan and anchovies in. Pan fry until the anchovies are cooked, and the onions and garlic are soft and fragrant.

Transfer all the ingredients from the pan into a food processor or a mortar and blend/pound until you get a good, chunky paste. Do not add water if you’re using the food processor since you want the paste to be chunky.

Serve as accompaniment to anything actually.

I actually like to eat it on it’s own.