When one mentions the name of the pickled side dish, acar, one usually thinks of the yellowish pickled vegetables dish with pineapples, carrots, cucumbers and the hot and spicy sambal belacan. In Singapore and many parts of Southeast Asia, we love eating acar as an accompaniment to our meals. The sweet and sour flavours of this pickled dish is supposed to help wash down any greasiness and fatty aftertastes of the main dishes which therefore helps one build appetite, especially at banquets where a heavy meal is to be expected.
This dish of acar timun serani is an Eurasian twist of the pickled recipe. It uses more onions and dried shrimps, giving it a slightly crunchier and drier texture. The onions and cucumber sticks taste much fresher and perhaps more raw than in the usual acar recipe, but this is exactly what makes the dish much more refreshing and appetising compared to the Malay/Peranakan version of acar.
- Cucumber: 3, peeled
- Dried shrimp: 100g, soaked for 5min, pat dry, grind into floss
- Green chilli: 2, stems and seeds removed, sliced diagonally
- Red onion: 2, peeled and sliced thinly
- White vinegar: 1 tbsp
- Sugar: 6 tbsp
- Light soy sauce: 2 tbsp
- Sambal belacan: 2 tbsp (more or less as preferred)
- Cut cucumbers lengthwise into quarters. Remove soft centers and slice diagonally.
- Toss cucumbers in a bowl with dried shrimp floss, green chilli & red onions.
- Stir in white vinegar, sugar, light soy sauce and sambal belacan.
- Chill in fridge for 30min before serving as a side dish.
- This recipe was kindly adapted from Quentin Pereira’s Eurasian Heritage Cooking.
About 60g (1 medium jar of pickle)