Get ready for a flavor-filled adventure with Sambal Ijo Padang, a tasty condiment from Indonesia. This vibrant green chili sambal combines the freshness of green chilies with zesty spices, creating a relish that will elevate your dishes to new heights. It's super easy to make and addictive!
Today, I'm excited to share an authentic Indonesian Sambal Ijo recipe with you. I’ll give a step-by-step process, uncovering the secrets behind this mouthwatering spicy condiment. From handpicking the perfect ingredients to blending them into a delightful dip, I'll give tips to achieve a balance of heat, sweetness, and tanginess in your Sambal Ijo. The additional good news is you can tailor it all to your taste buds.
What is Sambal Ijo
Sambal Ijo (hijau) is a specialty of Padang (West Sumatra, Indonesia). This spicy condiment is usually made of a unique blend of green chili peppers, aromatic herbs, and spices that gives this chili sauce its vibrant green color.
Sambal Ijo is a versatile sauce that can be served alongside meat, vegetables, rice, tempeh, or tofu or used for cooking or marinades.
Sambal Hijau Ingredients
This Sambal Hijau recipe is crafted using simple ingredients that are readily available at your local grocery store. It offers a more straightforward and healthier approach compared to restaurant-style Sambal Ijo (without compromising on taste!).
Here's the list of ingredients you'll need to make Sambal Ijo at home:
- Green Chili: You can choose from a variety of green chilies, such as Jalapeno, Serrano, or Hatch Chili, to infuse your Sambal Ijo with a fiery kick and a vibrant green color.
- Green Tomato: Just like the chili peppers, you have the flexibility to use any type of green tomato or tomatillo. These add texture, a pleasant acidity, and a nice lemony flavor to your Sambal Ijo.
- Garlic: Incorporate garlic into your Sambal Ijo to introduce a savory umami flavor that complements the other ingredients.
- Shallots: Enhance the aroma, sweetness, and complexity of your Sambal Ijo by adding shallots to the recipe.
- Salt: A small amount of salt enhances the flavors of all the other ingredients in your Sambal Ijo.
- Sugar: Balance the heat from the chilies and the acidity from the green tomato by adding sugar. This ingredient is crucial to achieving the perfect flavor harmony in your Sambal Ijo.
By utilizing these ingredients, you'll create a delicious Sambal Ijo that hits the right notes of heat, tanginess, and sweetness.
How to Make Sambal Ijo Padang
Here's the step-by-step tutorial on how to make sambal ijo at home.
Step 1. Prepare the Ingredients
- Wash the green chilies, and remove stems and seeds.
- Wash the green tomatoes or tomatillos and remove the stems.
- Peel the garlic cloves and shallots.
- Roughly chop the green chilies, garlic cloves, and shallots.
Step 2. Blanch the Ingredients
- In a pan, bring water to a boil.
- Add green chilies, green tomatoes, garlic cloves, and shallots to the pan.
- Blanch them for 2-3 minutes or until tender.
- Use a strainer to remove the vegetables from the pan.
Step 3. Blend the Ingredients
- In a blender or food processor, combine the blanched green chilies, green tomatoes or tomatillos, garlic cloves, and shallots.
- Blend until smooth.
Step 4. Sautee the Mixture
- Heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat.
- Add the blended mixture to the pan and cook for a few minutes until the sauce thickens.
- Season with salt and sugar to your liking.
Tips and Variations
- Green tomatoes are juicier than tomatillos. For a chunkier Sambal Ijo, use tomatillos.
- For a spicier result, there's no need to remove the seeds from the chili peppers.
- Always remember to taste the sauce and adjust the amount of sugar and salt to suit your personal preference.
- Chili peppers vary in their levels of heat. To achieve the best result, it's important to be aware of the type of chili you are using and adjust the amount accordingly. You can play with this to get a perfect level of spiciness in Sambal Ijo that is right for you.
- Restaurant-style Sambal Ijo often uses a generous amount of oil to sauté the mixture. However, for a healthier and less greasy version, I personally prefer using just a small amount of oil in my Sambal Ijo recipe.
- Some versions of Sambal Ijo may include kaffir lime leaves as one of the ingredients. In my recipe, I chose to omit the kaffir lime leaves because the tomatillo already provides a mild lemony, and citrusy flavor. If you happen to have kaffir lime leaves on hand, you are welcome to use them according to your preference.
- Using fresh ingredients is the secret to achieving the best-tasting Sambal Ijo! For that reason, I would not recommend using canned or dried chili peppers or tomatoes.
How to Store Leftover Sambal Ijo
Store the leftover sambal ijo in an airtight container. When properly stored, it can last up to 7 days in the refrigerator.
Check Out More Indonesian Recipes
I hope you'll enjoy this recipe and share it with friends! If you try it and don’t mind, please leave me a comment and/or give this recipe a rating. Be sure to subscribe to receive weekly recipes and follow me on Pinterest.
Authentic Sambal Ijo Recipe
- a pan
- 12 oz jalapeno or any green chilies, (about 6 pieces) remove stems, seeds, and slice
- 2½ oz shallots, (peeled and roughly chopped)
- 6 garlic cloves, (peeled and roughly chopped)
- 3 oz tomatillos or green tomatoes, (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon white sugar, (add more according to your liking)
- 1 teaspoon salt, (add more according to your liking)
- 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
- In a pan, bring water to a boil. Add green chilies, green tomatoes, garlic cloves, and shallots. Blanch for 2-3 minutes or until tender. Use a strainer to remove the vegetables from the pan.
- In a blender or food processor, combine the blanched green chilies, green tomatoes or tomatillos, garlic cloves, and shallots. Blend until smooth.
- Heat some vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the blended mixture to the pan and cook for 3 minutes or longer, until the sauce is thickened and fragrant. Season with salt and sugar to your liking.