Ever wondered why the “spicy” sambal is getting sweeter these days?
(Image source: Wikipedia)
I guess somewhere in the universe, some planets or stars must have crossed paths and the nasi lemak sellers down in Malaysia have decided to put more sugar (instead of chilly) into the “must have” concoction.
Last weekend, we woke up and had an urging desire to have nasi lemak for breakfast. So we went on a nasi lemak hunt – our usual stall manned by a friendly Orang Asli was closed. We drove around and found one stall manned by an old makcik. As we were busying order, the makcik asked a question to us – “you want the sweet sambal or the spicy sambal?”
All this while, all we know about the sambal is that it is red, have plenty of chilly and it is hot! Now we are hearing “sweet sambal” where it is still looks reddish, have plenty of chilly but instead of being hot and spicy, it is sweet and in real sense, tasteless.
Faced with the question “you want the sweet sambal or the spicy sambal?” our choice was too obvious. But sadly, the “spicy sambal” that the makcik had was not that spicy – a big letdown early in the morning.
But at least the makcik has a choice. The other place I often go to does not even have a choice. Their mainstay sambal is the sweet sambal which probably explains why their nasi lemak is one of the least popular dishes in their menu. Their curry is spicier than their sambal and with a load of curry; their santan rich nasi lemak gets some “pride” back.
To make good on the “losses” on not getting the spicy sambal these days, what we do is that to cook up a really spicy sambal at least once a week – really spicy in the sense that we can feel “fire” in the mouth.
We have been having way too much sugar in our spicy dishes on the outside.