Saturday, August 27, 2011

Nyonya Stir-Fried Long Beans with Shrimp Paste

My mom used to cook this when we were young, taught to her by her Nyonya mother. Like most things in life, this simple dish was taken for granted without any much thought, it is just a dish that we love to eat, without realizing how special and valuable it is  until much later, when we are much older and have family of our own. How could a simple dish like this with only four ingredients can taste so wonderful, at least to me it is. Just like how my  mom used to prepare the ingredients, by pounding, using a mortar and pestle, I now do the same.  I have tried blending the ingredients in a blender before, somehow the taste is not quite as tasty. You can say it's all in the mind, but to me it is just not the same! Modern gadgets definitely cuts the work by half, but it does not necessarily mean they give the same results! I guess that every household in Malaysia, no matter the race, would definitely have a set of mortar and pestle in the kitchen, admist all the modern kitchen appliances.


This is how I pound the garlic, onions and shrimp paste. Put a third of the garlic, onions and shrimp paste into the mortar and pound away. Pounding the shrimp paste together with the onions and garlic will help to absorb the juice from the onions and garlic and preventing the juice from splattering out (and gets into your eyes!). When it has been pounded to a coarse paste, add another third of the ingredients, pound and repeat with the remaining portion. This way, the chopped garlic and onions will not be popping out of the mortar as you pound. Or you may crush the chopped onions and garlic with the pestle before you start to  pound. Pound until the paste is coarsely fine. 



Now I cook this for my family, and they love it as much as I do. 



Unlike other stir-fries veggies where they are best eaten hot right after cooking, I prefer to eat this barely warm or at room temperature.



A simple, delicious dish that really complements well with plain white rice or even plain porridge.




I am sharing this with
Heritage Food Trail at Precious Moments
Vintage Recipe Thursday at Joy of Desserts
Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen's Country Cottage


Nyonya Stir-Fried Long Beans with Shrimp Paste
(by kitchen flavours)
400gm long beans
8-10 shallots, chopped coarsely
4 cloves garlic, chopped coarsely
25-30gm shrimp paste
salt to taste
1/2 cup water
3-4 tbsp cooking oil
  1. Cut long beans to 2" lengths.
  2. Pound shallots, garlic and shrimp paste together. Paste need not be pounded until very fine.
  3. Heat oil in wok, swirl oil over sides of wok. When oil is hot, add in pounded ingredients, stir-fry over medium heat until paste is light brown and fragrant, this would take about 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add in long beans and stir to combine. Add in water, stir and cover, turn heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, adding some water if appears dry. Add salt to taste, go easy on the salt as the shrimp paste is usually salty. Continue to simmer, covered, stirring now and then,  for about 10 minutes until long beans has softened.
  5. Dish out to a serving plate.




23 comments:

  1. I just had shrimp paste with long bean last night. I would put shrimp paste on any savory dishes. Have a good weekend!

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  2. I LOVE Nyonya recipes and this looks amazing!
    Karen

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  3. My mother makes a green bean dish similar to this. Your dish looks so homey and delicious!

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  4. Really like long bean, were delicious looking!
    kisses.

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  5. Good dish looks amazing and delicious, good food his mother gave him, just as my fed us excellent hugs.

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  6. I've never had shrimp paste before but this recipe sounds wonderful. I will have to see if stores here carry it. I still love to make recipes my mother made for me too :)

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  7. I too have never heard of shrimp paste but by looking at your recipe would really like to try it out. Excellent clicks.


    Deepa
    Hamaree Rasoi

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  8. Wooh, mouth watering already... we have long beans in our potager but no belacan...

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  9. This will be absolutely delicious with rice! Does your kitchen smell after cooking with belacan??

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  10. Those stir fried beans looks super delicious,can have with a bowl of rice..

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  11. i just love these shrimp paste. I also tried doing that by pounding using mortat and pestle whenever i can, it sure makes difference unless it's a very large batch, then i will consider blending them.

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  12. I've never had long beans, do they taste like green beans? I have a gorgeous mortar and pestle I picked up in Provence made from olive wood. I also think it makes food taste better!

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  13. Joy I love reading about family recipes like this one! It is so important to keep our own unique family dinners going onward with each new generation, likes like you do a great job of that, thanks!

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  14. This is one of my favorite dish. My mum always use mortar and pestle to do the paste and they always taste better than using blender. I am sure your family enjoyed this dish very much.

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  15. Oh, this sounds and looks delicious! Most times, simple dishes are the best. I so agree with using the mortar and pestle for a lot of foods. Good post!

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  16. Sounds yummy and right up my alley! Thanks for the welcome back to the world of blogging :-)

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  17. I agree, there are some things that the blender and food processor do faster, and look just as good or better, but somehow, although it is counter intuitive, it just doesn't taste as good as with the old fashioned tool. It's not in your mind.
    I've never had or seen shrimp paste, but I love shrimp. :-) I'll have to find it at an Asian specialty store.
    Thank you for participating with Vintage Recipe Thursday at Joy of Desserts. These type of family recipes (and tales) are just so good. :-)

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  18. Love long bean stir-fry, never had them prepared in nyonya style though. Looks very tasty.

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  19. I love the old fashion way of pounding the shrimp paste, this make the food taste better. Nyonya style long bean makes me hungry!

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  20. Ohhh miss have this! Gonna make some soon with some lovely fragrant rice!

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  21. Thanks for sharing the tip, next time I know what to do, this dish sound simply delicious.

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  22. Dear, I am bookmarking this. Cos I just sowed some bean seeds and I love belacan! Thank you so much for sending me email wishing selamat hari raya. You made my day!

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  23. Hi Joy ,
    What a great recipe, it look so fresh and delicious. It is a beautiful dish. Hope you are having a great week and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

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