Rambling: What is Sambal?


So you hear us talk about Sambal and how amazing it is all the time, but what is this thing we speak of?!

Sambal is a Malaysian chilli paste and the cornerstone of Malaysian cuisine. Bold statement, but true. There are many different versions of Sambal, and every restaurant, shop, and grandma has their recipe – but they are full of chilli, oil and local veg like galangal and shallots. It makes a great condiment to any meal, a sexy marinade or just off the spoon deliciousness.

Whilst you can buy Sambal from your local Asian grocer or Supermarket, ours is better. We’ve tried and confirmed, done all of the research so you do not have to. ⁠

⁠At Makan Malaysia, we have three types: ⁠

1. The Sambal – our everything Sambal, best selling, and most versatile⁠. Whilst this packs some heat, also layered with galangal, ginger, tamarind and more! Great on its own, mixed into mayo, as a curry base and however, you want it!

2. Sambal Belacan (pronounce beh-la-chan) – packed full of chilli and fermented shrimp paste, this one is deeper, hotter and very intense. Perfect if you’re looking for a punchy, umami kick and makes an excellent fish marinade⁠

⁠3. Sambal Hijau – the light and friendly⁠ sister to our other Sambals. This one is full of fresh green tomatoes, chilli’s and limes and carries more of a salsa vibe to it⁠
So have you tried the entire collection? Which one is your favourite?


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