Balinese Recipe: Sambal Matah and Tumis Paku

Indonesian food is very popular in the world. For example, there are rendang and fried rice. In Bali itself, there are suckling pig dishes and also chicken/duck betutu style.

balinese recipe

Today, let's try to make 2 traditional dishes. You can cook this for lunch or dinner to your family 😊

Balinese food is unique from the spices used and unique cooking techniques. Each house has its own unique recipe, there is even the term “dakin lima” which literally translates as “hand dirt” but actually this refers to a person's skill in preparing food and each person has a unique technique that only that person has. Because of that, the taste of the food he prepared would be completely different from other chefs.

Balinese family:

Behind The Names: Putu, Kadek, Komang, Ketut

Sambal Matah: Sambal with Raw Ingredients

Sambal matah is a chili sauce served in Balinese food, especially seafood dishes. Its spicy, savory and slightly sour taste gives the dish a fresh taste.

balinese fish
Today, I made sambal matah with ikan aju 

Sambal Matah Ingredients:

50 grams of shallots

10 grams of red cayenne pepper

10 grams of green cayenne pepper

3 stalks of lemongrass

6 pieces of lime leaves

2 limes

5 grams of salt

3 grams of sugar

1 tbsp shrimp paste

Coconut oil.

sambal matah


Thinly slice red onion, chili and lemongrass, set aside. Remove the center stem of the lime leaf and then thinly slice the lime leaves. Mix the sliced onions, sliced chilies, sliced lemongrass, and sliced lime leaves in a bowl. Grill the shrimp paste briefly. Mix the shrimp paste into the first ingredient mixture. Heat the coconut oil until it boils then brew the mixture with coconut oil. Stir for a while, pour in the lime juice.

Sambal Matah is ready to be served.

Tumis Paku

Indonesians have a saying that Indonesians are strong because they eat nails. What is actually meant is not real house nails but vegetable ferns which have the scientific name Diplazium esculentum.

This vegetable fern has an interesting texture, the leaves are soft while the stems are fibrous. The game texture blends with the spices to make it taste even more delicious.

tumis paku

Tumis Paku Ingredients:

2 bunches of fern

2 cloves of garlic

4 shallots

3 hot peppers (optional).

2 tbsp thick coconut milk

1 pinch uyah sere (shrimp paste; mixed the paste with salt)

1 pinch of sugar.

1 pinch of turmeric powder.


Clean the fern and cut into about 4 cm pieces. Slice the shallots, garlic and chilies. Heat some oil. Sauté the onions and chilies for a while, add the lemongrass and nail vegetables. Stir a, add water, then add coconut milk and other spices. You can adjust the taste before serving.

These recipes are quite simple. Try this to make your meals taste like Balinese! 


  1. hehe agak shock baca judulnya ada pakunya aku kira paku beneran. ternyata bukaaan haha

  2. I ate sambal matah with baked fish at 2011, and it was YUMMY very much.

    Then i tried to make it in my house. sambal matah with sate lilit, ooh it's so delicious.

    Kak Felis, can I make sambal matah without shrimp paste?

  3. Wihhh sambal matah ini favoritku banget, soalnya paling cocok ama banyak jenis makanan bahkan ama nasi anget aja udah enak apalagi kalau pake minyak kelapa asli home made. Sedep mantep!

  4. aww.. my favorite sambal matah. Usually I eat sambal matah with ikan goreng and cah kangkung. but I've never tried ikan aju and tumis paku ini. Noted this recipe and i try soon.

  5. paku dengan model tumis seperti daku belum pernah coba. seringnya dibuat balado atau digulai.
    kayaknya nikmat banget itu model tumisnya.
    pankapan kalau ketemu pakis mau ah dibuat seperti itu

  6. Hua pas banget saya belum makan siang dna lihat ini auto makin lapar ini mah, saya baru tahu ikan aju ini kak, kayaknya enak ya penasaran pengen makan

  7. Wah, i'm so glad to coming here and found about Sambal Matah recipe. It will help me a lot because i really want to trying making Sambal Matah for my self.

    And i really want to trying making Tumis Paku too.

    Thank you for this recipe, Mrs. Putu

  8. Ya ampun, sejak dulu pengen banget nyoba sayur paku-pakuan kak. Kalau di tempatku, itu sayuran gak ada di pasar. Kelihatan enak dan seger banget.

  9. My fav sambal when eat seafood dish. Spicy but fresh in the mouth. I like crunchiness from shallots. It reminds me when i was studying in Bali several years ago.

  10. Paku disini paku-pakuan ya. Tanaman yang kalau di kampung saya termasuk tumbuhan liar. Tapi kalau ditumis emang enak. Delicious so....

  11. Sambal Matah is like a flavor explosion for your taste buds! It's a Bali thing, packed with fresh shallots, chilies, and zesty lime. Drizzle it on grilled goodies for that spicy kick. Perfectly cool with beach vibes and tropical bites.

  12. sambal matah is one of my fav sambal! I've tried to made sambal matah with different recipe and still good, but yours is so tempting~ unfortunately never eat tumis paku before

  13. Sayur paku ini lumayan langka yaa..
    Dan di Bali, kalau uda dihidangkan sambal matah, aku gak rewel. Mau lauk apa aja, asalkan sama nasi hangat, uuwwh~ sedapnyaaa tiada kira..

  14. waah ada resep sambal matah! ini enak nih, mesti coba :9 tapi aku belum cobain sih Tumis Paku nya :D tampaknya juga enyak~~

  15. baru tau ternyata tumis paku tuh ada juga di bali ya
    aku sering masaknya di bengkulu kak, dengan campuran udang yummy banget

  16. Aduuuh itu sambalnya menggoda sekali! Ternyata bikinnya gampang ya, ntar dicoba ah #zillubis

  17. Pengen nyobain resep sayur paku nya euy..aku penasaran banget dg jenis sayurann satu ini, pernah nyicip tapi blm pernah bikin sendiri

  18. I never try sambal matah, so never know how the original taste.


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