Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Serunding Udang (erm.. dried fried shrimp floss?)

If you also read lollies, you'll notice that we expat mommies are always cooking up something. As she said, we really don't have a choice, coz
1) We can't really stand eating ar@b fare day after day. We very the melayu one!! nasi kena ada kuah, masak kena guna bawang.
2) We have nothing better to do anyways. Dok saja karang.. gemuk lak
3) If we don't cook, who will? Our moms are so far away from us. Kalau tak I dah lama telpon or jalan kaki pegi rumah mama aje.. which was exactly what I did when I went back home last time
4) If you're pregnant, like me, and you crave for something that's not even sold here, you have no choice but to cook it yourself.

Another point that lollies brought up was that whenever there are a gathering of Melayus, you are usually expected to bring something. I don't really feel the pressure of being judged by my cooking, but I do know that I get slighted very easily when I see my dish go unfinished (even at home). Plus, I try to vary what I bring, for fear of being labeled as the Makcik Cekodok, or Minah Nasi Goreng or the Pasta Lady.
So that is why you see me trying out new recipes almost every week. Usually I would crave for something, then I would search for the recipe and I would try it out and if I think it's edible, then I would bring it to gatherings to show off test it out.
Slowly, slowly, my repertoire is building.. :)

Anyways. This week I was craving for Cucur Badak (sweet potato balls with spicy shrimp+coconut filling) coz Ihsan asked for Cucur keria (sweet potato doughnuts) so I made some and I had leftover filling, which in turn made me crave for Pulut and Serunding Udang (glutinous rice with dried fried shrimp floss ) ...
Long story short, I ended up making lots of Serunding Udang, so I brought it to my tajweed class last night (together with glutinous rice) and found that my test subjects classmates really liked it. Well, at least they liked it enough to ask me for the recipe.

So you can say that what I will put here is the tried and tested recipe for Serunding Udang..

Serunding Udang

5-8 pieces of dried chillies (or 2 tablespoons of chilli powder, adjust for spiciness)
5 shallots
3 cloves of garlic
1 stalk of lemon grass
½ inch gallangal root
3 handfuls of dried shrimps (the fat ones, roughly 80grams, but the more the tastier)

Don't pound/blend:
50-100grams dessicated coconut (or freshly grated coconuts if you can get them)
½ can coconut milk (err.. roughly 1 cup, i guess?)
2 handfuls of the thin dried shrimp (udang kepal? They are very tiny and thin and almost transluscent)
salt and sugar to taste (I used brown sugar coz it gives a great color in the end)

In a big wok or frying pan, saute the pounded ingredients in 2 tablespoons of oil till fragrant. Dump in the coconut, coconut milk, and the dried shrimps and stir to mix well. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Under the lowest heat you can possibly manage*, continuously stir ingredients until all the liquid is dried up and the ingredients are fried to your desired crispiness. (Personally, I prefer it really crunchy and crispy). Just before everything is totally dry, taste again and add salt/sugar if necessary.

*Note: You have to constantly stir the ingredients to avoid burning it. Believe me, it takes a while for it to dry up and get crispy. Choose a heat level that you have the patience to handle (The lower the heat, the longer it takes to dry up).
At some point you're gonna feel like it's NEVER gonna dry up.. don't give up, coz a perfect end result is so rewarding!
If you need to stop for any reason (e.g. to go watch American Idol, for instance), turn off the heat, take the pot off the stove, and stir until the pot is cooled before leaving it. When you're ready to continue, stir everything while the pot is heating up on the stove.

Eat with cooked glutinous rice (1 cup glutinous rice, 1 cup coconut milk, cook uncovered under high heat till boiling, then cook covered under low heat until it's tender) or even on a buttered toast. YUM YUM YUMMMY!

Variations of this dish that I can think of:
Use anchovies instead of shrimp.
Make it entirely out of the un-pounded thin dried shrimp.
Add fried peanuts? hm.. could be interesting.

Happy trying! ... and don't forget to tell me if it turns out great. (Or not).


  1. moshimoshi7:30 AM

    you're pregnant?

  2. moshimoshi12:09 PM

    ignore the above comment. didn't actually see the date of the post just now hehehe