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Gaeng som

Banyen’s late grandmother was born and raised in southern Thailand. As a result, this dish makes an appearance at least twice a week on their dinner table at home, as it is her dad and grandfather’s favourite dish. Have it like they do with salted egg or salted fish to complement the spicy gravy. 

 

Tableware by Ilham Ceramic Studio.

Gaeng som

by Banyen Aroonratana

Banyen’s late grandmother was born and raised in southern Thailand. As a result, this dish makes an appearance at least twice a week on their dinner table at home, as it is her dad and grandfather’s favourite dish. Have it like they do with salted egg or salted fish to complement the spicy gravy. 

 

Tableware by Ilham Ceramic Studio.

Servings: 4

Gaeng som

Servings: 4

FOR THE PASTE:

10 big dried red chillies, soaked in hot water

8 fresh red chilies, roughly chopped

5-6 bird’s eye chillies (more if you prefer it spicier), roughly chopped

3-4 stalks of lemongrass, bottom white part only

1 whole head of garlic, peeled

3-4 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped

2″ piece of fresh turmeric, peeled 

2″ piece of fermented shrimp paste (belacan)

 

FOR THE GRAVY:

250ml water

125ml tamarind juice

Salt to taste

1 tsp sugar

1 cup pineapple, chopped into small wedges (optional)

1 small bunch water spinach/kangkung (optional)

400g any firm white fish pieces (eg mackerel/tenggiri)

  1. Blend or pound the ingredients for the paste into a fine consistency.
  2. Heat up a mid-sized pot or saucepan over a low flame. Saute 4 tbsp of the blended paste in the pan without oil for about 1 minute until fragrant, taking care to not burn the paste. If the paste starts to burn too quickly, lower the flame and add 1 tbsp of water to the paste at a time.
  3. Stir in 1 cup of water and bring the pot to a boil.
  4. Add tamarind juice, salt, and sugar. Keep tasting along the way.
  5. If using pineapple and kangkung, add them at this point.
  6. Gently lower the fish into the gravy and bring the pot to a gentle simmer until the fish is fully cooked, about 8-10 minutes. Keep the flame low, and do not stir the gravy.
  7. The gravy should be spicy, umami, and sour, with the consistency of thin soup.

Tips

  • Estimate the amount of paste needed based on the amount of fish being used. Use about 1 tbsp of paste to every 100g of fish, and keep the leftover paste in the freezer for up to 2 months.
  • Instead of cooking the fish in the gravy, the gravy can also be poured over fried fish.

Ingredients

FOR THE PASTE:

10 big dried red chillies, soaked in hot water

8 fresh red chilies, roughly chopped

5-6 bird’s eye chillies (more if you prefer it spicier), roughly chopped

3-4 stalks of lemongrass, bottom white part only

1 whole head of garlic, peeled

3-4 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped

2″ piece of fresh turmeric, peeled 

2″ piece of fermented shrimp paste (belacan)

 

FOR THE GRAVY:

250ml water

125ml tamarind juice

Salt to taste

1 tsp sugar

1 cup pineapple, chopped into small wedges (optional)

1 small bunch water spinach/kangkung (optional)

400g any firm white fish pieces (eg mackerel/tenggiri)

Directions

  1. Blend or pound the ingredients for the paste into a fine consistency.
  2. Heat up a mid-sized pot or saucepan over a low flame. Saute 4 tbsp of the blended paste in the pan without oil for about 1 minute until fragrant, taking care to not burn the paste. If the paste starts to burn too quickly, lower the flame and add 1 tbsp of water to the paste at a time.
  3. Stir in 1 cup of water and bring the pot to a boil.
  4. Add tamarind juice, salt, and sugar. Keep tasting along the way.
  5. If using pineapple and kangkung, add them at this point.
  6. Gently lower the fish into the gravy and bring the pot to a gentle simmer until the fish is fully cooked, about 8-10 minutes. Keep the flame low, and do not stir the gravy.
  7. The gravy should be spicy, umami, and sour, with the consistency of thin soup.

Tips

  • Estimate the amount of paste needed based on the amount of fish being used. Use about 1 tbsp of paste to every 100g of fish, and keep the leftover paste in the freezer for up to 2 months.
  • Instead of cooking the fish in the gravy, the gravy can also be poured over fried fish.

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© Copyright Periuk 2021

© Copyright Periuk 2021