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This refreshing salad is popular in Malaysia and Indonesia and features crunchy vegetables and a rich, creamy peanut dressing - the perfect lunch on a hot day, or as a light dinner.

Serves 2

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60g sengkuang (yam bean/jicama), peeled and cut into matchsticks

½ Japanese cucumber, cut into 1cm rounds

60g white cabbage, leaves separated and cut into squares

To blanch:

60g long beans, ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch lengths

60g carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks

30g bean sprouts/taugeh, cleaned and ends trimmed

To deep fry:

50g tau kwa, in large cubes

50g tempeh, sliced 0.5 cm thick

2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chips

2 hard boiled eggs

4 prawns, peeled and deveined*

8 pieces of emping belinjo

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon turmeric/kunyit powder


2 teaspoons cooking oil

2 pcs garlic, peeled

3 pcs red shallot, peeled

2 red chillies, deseeded and sliced

½ teaspoon belacan

1 tablespoon palm sugar

1 tablespoon kecap manis

50g roasted peanuts, roughly chopped

50g crunchy peanut butter

100ml coconut milk

110ml water

1 teaspoon fresh calamansi lime juice



  1. For Sauce:  First blend the garlic, shallot, chillies and belacan to a smooth paste in the food processor.
  2. Put the cooking oil in a medium saucepan and turn to medium heat, when hot, add the spice paste and saute till fragrant, about 8 mins.
  3. Add the sugar, kecap manis, water, peanut butter and coconut milk and simmer over low heat till thickened.
  4. Finally, add the roasted peanuts and lime juice, simmer gently till thickened. And remove from heat.
  5. For the vegetables: Fill a medium pot ¾ full with water and bring water to boil. Prepare a separate bowl of iced water (to ‘shock’ the vegetables after boiling). 
  6. When water is boiling, add the long beans. Cook for 1.5 minutes or until they turn bright green. Remove from the water with a slotted spoon, then add to the iced water before removing from iced water to strainer to dry.
  7. Repeat with the carrots (1.5 minutes) and the bean sprouts (20 seconds) in the boiling water, followed by dipping in the iced water to stop the cooking process, then draining. When all the vegetables are blanched and drained, set aside.
  8. For deep-fried items: Pat the tau kwa, eggs, tempeh, prawns (if using) and potato dry with paper towels, then gently rub with turmeric powder and salt.
  9. In a frying pan or small, deep saucepan, put 200ml vegetable oil, heat over medium heat till the oil is shimmering hot, then add the tau kwa, frying on all sides till golden, remove and drain. Repeat with the tempeh, then the hard-boiled eggs, prawns and finally the potatoes. Halve the hard boiled eggs when cool.
  10. To assemble the dish, get a large serving dish and arrange the vegetables and ingredients in alternating/contrasting colours and textures on the dish, top with emping belinjau and serve the sauce on the side.

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