"Without chile, there is no appetite."
Great words, indeed.
I can't say enough how we enjoy the show Food Safari: we've learned a little bit more about a variety of different foods, even being occasioned to make Thai food (here and here), Lebanese, Turkish and Spanish food, just to name a few.
This time, the episode from which we drew inspiration was their Indonesian episode. All the dishes featured were quite drool-worthy, but I thought it would be good to start with what seems like a basic sauce: belado.
I had never heard of belado before. Searching for it on the Internet didn't yield much; I was a little surprised.
Apparently, it's usually spelled BALADO in Indonesia. Food Safari led us astray!]
In plainest terms, it is a chile sauce. Quite versatile, it seems. As per the Food Safari episode, it can be used for fried prawns, squid, fish, chicken, fried boiled eggs, eggplant, tofu, tempeh or potatoes. In other words, everything! Indonesian bloggers, perhaps you can enlighten us about it. =)
It so happened that we grabbed a bag of these beautiful peppers from the market. Ooh, colors. So pretty. I was all set!
To make belado, chile peppers, shallots and tomatoes are blended together. Oil is heated, then the mixture is seasoned with salt and sugar and cooked until it is slightly thick. Lime juice finishes it.
Originally, I wanted to make a red chile pepper belado and a yellow chile pepper belado, then layer those in a jar.
When I puréed the yellow peppers with the onions and tomatoes, however, I realized that the resulting color would still be red. I scratched that idea.
All the peppers, regardless of color, were puréed together.
Here is the chile peppers, red onions (we didn't have shallots on hand), tomatoes, sugar and salt cooking away. I had to let it cook longer than the recipe stated because my mixture seemed to be more watery than on the show. I added the lime juice to finish it shortly thereafter.
Let me tell you, the fumes while this was cooking were quite something! Having successfully braved the fumes (barely making it out unscathed), I turned to tasting my belado.
I'm not quite the heat-freak, but I believe my heat tolerance isn't typically low. Tasting this, however, I had to take the necessary precautions and properly label it.
I don't know how that Indonesian woman on the show could've used a whole lot for her prawns! (On the other hand, she was the one who uttered those words above about chiles and appetites.)
Having made belado, it really is quite versatile. One usage is for stir-fried vegetables.
Green Beans Belado
I've also used it in a Thai-ish Beef and Gailan stir-fry (pad gka-prow).
I use it to make other condiments: like mixing a little bit of it in pho, or adding it to soy sauce, rice vinegar and water to make a dipping sauce for CSC's dumplings.
Basically, it has become the hot sauce of choice around here.
Now we're just waiting to use it as a topping for deep-fried hardboiled eggs.
(Deep-fried hardboiled eggs! How cool is that!?)
Food Safari website
Food Safari: Indonesian
[eatingclub] vancouver dishes inspired by Food Safari episodes:
Spanish: Tortilla de Patatas
Thai: Waterfall Beef Salad
Lebanese: Tarator-style Sauce
Thai: Thai Basil Stir-Fry (gka prow)
Lebanese: Lamb Kafta (Turkish: Lamb Kofte)
Moroccan: Preserved Lemons
Moroccan: Chicken Tagine
We're submitting this post to Waiter, there's something in my... Indonesian. This edition is hosted by Andrew of SpittoonExtra.
Info about Waiter, there's something in my...
on The Passionate Cook
on Cook Sister!