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Typical way of serving from Sambal Oelek
Preparation of sambal oelek with a pestle

A Sambal is a thick, from Indonesia originating condiment on Chili basis, which is traditionally served in small bowls as Würzbeilage to vegetables, chicken, fish and rice. Depending on the recipe, the individual preparations vary in their degree of spiciness .


Sambals are not only used in Indonesian cuisine , but are also very popular in other Asian cuisines such as Malaysian cuisine . At first glance, it has been used in Suriname since the end of the 19th century; Indonesian contract workers from the Dutch East Indies colony introduced sambals into the kitchen of the South American country.


Sambals can be divided into two groups according to their preparation method: On the one hand, there are sambals that are cold-prepared from fresh chili peppers and preserved with salt. The individual ingredients are crushed and mixed in a mortar ( cobek ) with a pestle ( Indonesian ulek-ulek or ulekan ) . The well-known Sambal Ulek (Dutch spelling Oelek ) belongs to this group. On the other hand there is the larger group of sambals fried in oil and mixed with other spices. The basis for this is made up of chili peppers and tomatoes , which are fried, plus onions and garlic . The mass is fried until it is thick. A typical representative of this second group is the comparatively mild Sambal Manis.


  • Sambal Asam : Sambal with shrimp paste and tamarind juice
  • Sambal Asli : Sambal with garlic
  • Sambal Badjak : fried, spicy sambal with fried onions and ketjap manis
  • Sambal Badjak Udang : fried, spicy sambal with shrimp
  • Sambal Balado : Fried Sambal according Minangkabau -type with garlic, onions, tomatoes, salt and lemon or lime juice
  • Sambal Bawang : mild sambal with fresh onions
  • Sambal Belachan : fried sambal from Malaysia with shrimp paste. Belachan is the Malay name for shrimp paste, which is called trassi in Indonesia . The Sambal Belachan can be mixed with other ingredients and results in, for example, Sambal Kangkong, Sambal Sotong or Sambal Telur (see below).
  • Sambal Brandal (or Berandal ): fried, spicy sambal
  • Sambal Dapur : fresh sambal
  • Sambal Djahe : mild sambal with fresh ginger
  • Sambal Djeruk (or Djeroek ): mild, slightly sour sambal ( djeruk means citrus fruit in Indonesian )
  • Sambal Ebi : Sambal made from dried shrimp
  • Sambal Gledek : very hearty sambal
  • Sambal Goreng : fried sambal
  • Sambal Kangkong : Malay sambal with shrimp paste and Kang kong
  • Sambal Katjang : mild sambal made from peanuts
  • Sambal Kemiri : mild sambal made from kukui nuts ( known as kemiri in Indonesia )
  • Sambal Manis spicy, sweet sambal, which also Ketjap manis, a sweet: soy sauce contains,
  • Sambal Oelek (or Ulek ): spicy sambal that consists only of raw, crushed red chili peppers, salt and vinegar . The Indonesian word ulek describes a kind of pestle with which the ingredients are crushed in a mortar.
  • Sambal Padang : very mild sambal
  • Sambal Pecel : Sambal made from peanuts
  • Sambal Pepesan : Sambal especially suitable for fish dishes
  • Sambal Peteh : Sambal made from Peteh beans
  • Sambal Pedis : spicy sambal ( pedis or pedas means spicy )
  • Sambal Rawit : Sambal made from small, green, extremely hot rawit chili peppers
  • Sambal Setan : very hot and spicy sambal ( setan from Arabic shaitan , "devil")
  • Sambal Sotong : Malay sambal with shrimp paste and squid
  • Sambal Taotjo : mild sambal with soybean paste
  • Sambal Telur : Malay sambal with shrimp paste and egg
  • Sambal Tjampoer : Sambal with shrimp paste
  • Sambal Trassi : Sambal made from red chillies ground in a mortar, tomatoes, sugar , salt, lime juice and roasted shrimp paste ( trassi ). The sambal trassi is also widely used in Surinamese cuisine.
  • Surinamese sambal : a particularly spicy seasoning sauce from the former Dutch colony of Suriname, which consists of Surinamese chillies, cayenne chillies , oil, sugar, tamarind , shrimp paste and salt.

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