Tempeh with Chilli Sambal

Origin: East Java
Source: Inspired by Warung Arema, Pujasera Batam Island


  • 250 g tempeh
  • 1 pc cucumber, sliced
  • a handfull of sweet basil leaves / kemangi

Chilli sambal

  • 3 pc small red chillies / bird chillies
  • 1 pc large red chilli, raughly chopped
  • 1 gloves garlic
  • 1 pc middle size or 1/2 big size tomato, raughly chopped
  • 1 tsp roasted shrimp paste / terasi
  • 1 tsp chopped lesser galangal / kencur or 1/2 tsp kencur pulver
  • salt to taste
  • sugar to taste (if preferred)

Tempeh with Chilli Sambal

This is one of my favorite menus in Warung Arema, Pujasera, Batam Island. I've had it often together with my ex colleagues as our delicated lunch in the middle of our busy days. It depends on the mood sometimes I ordered Tempe Penyet (this recipe) or "Ayam Penyet". Both taste really superb! With it's spicy sambal of course!! The spicy sambal which contains fresh lesser galangal rhizome… hmmmmmm ..I think words could not expressed to describe it 😉
And after 4 years leaving abroad finally I have tried to call back my memory and came out with this recipe. The result was too spicy ha hah. Important Tips: Prepare the sambal shortly before serving to reserve it's best taste.


  • Making Fried Tempe: Slice the tempe as desired. Put aside. Grind 1 clove garlic, 1/2 tsp koriander seeds & salt then add little bit of water.
  • Soak the tempe in the mixture for a while then fry in a hot oil until gold brown. Please see "Fried Tempeh & Tofu" for detailed recipe.
  • Making chilli sambal: Fry the garlic in the used oil until light brown.
  • Put the chillies, garlic and lesser galangale in a mortar / grinding stone and grind until smooth.
  • Add the chopped tomato and roasted shrimp paste , grind them again. Stir to mix.
  • Adjust the seasoning, add the salt & sugar (if necessary).
  • Put the fried tempe on top of the sambal kencur. Bruise / crush the tempeh slightly with the pestle.
  • Serve Tempeh with Chilli Sambal with rice, sliced cucumber, raw vegetables & kemangi leaves.
Keyword chilli sambal, tempeh

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