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Ikan bilis sambal with cucumber and peanuts

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for ikan bilis sambal with cucumber and peanuts.

By Alice Storey
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 20 mins cooking
  • Serves 4
  • Print
Ikan bilis sambal with cucumber and peanuts


  • 140 gm (1½ cups) ikan bilis, soaked in cold water for 5 minutes (see note)
  • 2 long red chillies, chopped
  • 3 shallots, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tsp finely grated ginger
  • ½ tsp shrimp paste
  • For shallow-frying: vegetable oil
  • 140 gm (1 cup) peanuts, in their skins
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • To serve: lime wedges, coriander and wedges of cabbage


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 160C. Drain ikan bilis, spread on a tray and bake until golden (8-10 minutes).
  • 2
    Meanwhile, process chillies, shallot, garlic, ginger and shrimp paste in a food processor until smooth.
  • 3
    Heat oil in a wok over high heat until hot, add peanuts and cook until golden (1-2 mintues). Transfer to a tray lined with absorbent paper with a slotted spoon and set aside. Fry ikan bilis until crisp (1 minute). Transfer to a tray lined with absorbent paper and set aside.
  • 4
    Pour out oil leaving 40ml in wok, add reserved chilli paste and fry until it deepens in colour (3-4 minutes). Stir in sugar, then add ikan bilis and peanuts and serve with cucumber and cabbage.


Note Ikan bilis, small dried anchovies, are available from select Asian grocers.
Drink Suggestion: Tiger beer. Drink suggestion by Max Allen