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Udang Balado (Shrimp in Spicy Chili Sauce)

Posting Date: 03/26/17

Udang Balado (Shrimp in Spicy Chili Sauce)

Udang Balado (Shrimp in Spicy Chili Sauce) originated from Padang, the western part of Sumatra island in Indonesia. The dishes from that region are always spicy and hot. There are many variations of balado (spicy chili sauce). It can be made using hard boiled egg, eggplant, or shrimp. It is good to eat with warm rice. For this recipe, I make udang balado (shrimp in spicy chili saucce) variation. Since it is hard to find red chili pepper in the stores, I use sambal oelek. Sambal oelek is made of red chili peppers, vinegar, and salt. Since the color of the peppers used is red, I use it as a substitute for recipes that are supposed to use red chili peppers in the ingredients. The red color in the chili peppers is the one that makes the food looks red and appealing. That's why I want to keep the same appearance. In addition, sambal oelek doesn't have garlic or any other spices in the ingredients, so this makes it a suitable replacement for red chili peppers.

For this recipe, I only use 1 tablespoon of sambal oelek. You can add more if you like it hot. If you don't like it hot, you can reduce the amount. In Indonesia, udang balado can also be served with fried diced potato. So, you can fry 1 diced potato. Once done, transfer it to the plate lined with paper towel. Once the shrimps have become pink, add the fried potato and stir it so that the potato is coated with the spice paste.

The recipe serves for 2-3 people.


  • 3 small shallots or 1 large shallot, halved. It will be processed in food processor.
  • 3 cloves of garlic, halved. It will be processed in food processor.
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek or to taste. If you like the heat, you can add more. If you don't like the heat, you can reduce the quantity. One tablespoon of sambal oelek makes the dish mild.
  • 1 Roma tomato or small tomato, diced. It will be processed in food processor.
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 21 extra large shrimps, peeled and deveined but leave the skin on the tail
  • 1.5 teaspoon sugar or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • steamed rice


  1. Process shallots, garlic, sambal oelek, and tomato in a food processor until it becomes smooth paste.
  2. Turn on the stove to medium high. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil on a pan. Once the vegetable oil is hot, add spice paste to the pan. Saute it until it becomes fragrant and cooked.
  3. Add shrimps, juice from 1 lime, sugar, and salt to the pan, stir them, and cook until the shrimps become pink. Taste it and add more sugar or salt if needed. If you add more seasoning, make sure you stir it so that it gets mixed.
  4. Turn off the stove. Transfer the food to the serving plate and serve it warm with steamed rice.

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