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Balinese Grilled Mackerel - Ikan Bumbu Bali

Ikan Bumbu Bali, as it is lovingly known by the people of Bali which is considered to be heaven on earth. It is a traditional Indonesian dish which is quite centric to their age old methods of cooking food, using a base of sauce and then cooking the meat into it and then char grilling the meat. A best seller in town and a must have, if ever you shall be visiting Bali.
  Mackerel 20 Ounce
  Fresh turmeric 1 Inch
  Salt 1⁄2 Teaspoon
  Lime 1
  Salad oil 1 Tablespoon
  Lemon grass 1
  Water 2 Cup (32 tbs)
  Sweet soy sauce 3 Tablespoon
  Shallots 10
  Garlic 3 Clove (15 gm)
  Candlenuts 5
  Ginger 1⁄2 Inch
  Tamarind juice 1 Tablespoon
  Salt To Taste
  Sugar To Taste

1. In a grinder, grind shallots, garlic, candlenuts, ginger, tamarind juice, salt, sugar.
2. Scrape the scales off and wash the mackerel, cut into appropriate pieces, marinade with salt, lime juice and turmeric for 10-20 minutes.

3. In a frying pan, heat oil and fry the mackerel
4. In another pan, heat oil and fry the ground shallots mixture and the lemongrass.
5. Add water, sweet soy sauce and bring to a boil, simmer until sauce thickens, stirring continuously.
6. Add fried mackerel and simmer until fish absorbs the sauce.
7. Now char-grill the fish until browns on all sides.

8. Serve hot with steaming rice and the sauce.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: 
Main Dish
Meaty, Juicy
Gourmet, Healthy
Preparation Time: 
25 Minutes
Cook Time: 
35 Minutes
Ready In: 
60 Minutes
Well, I had this dish while enjoying my part of the sunset at the pristine beaches of Jimbaran, Bali, what i would describe as a perfect setting for having this flavor explosive in my mouth. With traditional dances and performances happening around, all of a sudden my wife stopped me and exclaimed what a fantastic fish is this. To me this was a miracle, since my wife never positively favored south east asian cuisine and fish was something she didn't venture into quite often. On this occasion, she was quite out of options for dinner, but it really made my day. The fish in deed was a beauty, and the flavors it packed in itself did create some magic moments, and now after an year, we still remember that evening in Bali, not because of the magic moments, but majorly because of the Fish in Bumbu bali. We simply miss it!!!
Grilled Fish Balinese Style

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lianne 12's picture
what are candlenuts? and can i buy tamarind juice at the supermarket - or asian shop.? geelong. and do u know any other reciepes from bali...
Culinary.Crack.a.Jack's picture
Hi Lianne, Candlenuts are also known as Indian Walnut or Kemiri and easily available in asian stores, and so is tamarind juice.
Rahul.Chef.and.Writer's picture
Lianne...the kemiri/ candlenuts are widely available and yes there are plenty of balinese recipes...simple yet exotic...i love bali
Balinese Grilled Mackerel - Ikan Bumbu Bali Recipe, Grilled Fish Balinese Style