Sambal and lesson learned.

I ask Andrew to make sambal pretty regularly. The recipe I love the most is Sambal in the Style of Java has cabbage, carrots, peanuts, sprouts, and lots of spicy yummy dressing. It’s crunchy and satisfying. I’m including the recipe here. Seriously good stuff.

Sambal in the Style of Java

2 C shredded green cabbage
1 C peeled, shredded carrots
½ C bean sprouts
½ C peanuts

1 T minced fresh ginger
1 T minced hot pepper (jalapeno, etc.)
1 t minced garlic
1 t shrimp paste or Asian fish sauce
2 T cracked coriander seeds
¼ C lime juice (about 2 limes)
¼ C sugar
¼ C soy sauce
¼ C molasses
½ C peanut or vegetable oil
Salt and black pepper to taste

Combine cabbage, carrots, sprouts, and peanuts in a large bowl.
In a separate bowl mix all other ingredients until well blended.
Pour dressing over vegetables and mix well.
Best eaten shortly after being made, will keep up to 2 days in refrigerator.

I had never really looked at the recipe before. I never much thought about it. But today, Andrew was making it for me and we all lost track of time and he had to leave for several hours. “Honey, can you make the dressing while I’m out?” Andrew asked.

“No problem.”

But you know what? It was a problem. Not doing it, mind you. But I am no cook. I don’t dice. I don’t mince. I don’t juice.

While I’m neurotically detail-oriented in my work, I am not patient with these sorts of tasks. Maybe I was a sous chef in a previous life and just got sick and tired of it. I don’t know. But what I do know is that it took extreme effort but I minced the jalapenos into perfectly even pieces. I juiced the limes.

I did everything that was expected of me.

But all that work and you know what? It’s just the dressing on a side dish for dinner.

I mean seriously folks. Is this rewarding to you?

I’m not feeling it.

I suppose this just reinforces how lucky I am to have married a great cook.

‘Cause I wouldn’t work this hard.


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