December 3, 2017

Sibu Tales : School recipes Exchange - Cucumber Pickle

Recently I discovered a lot of on line business which women can take part in. One of the businesses is the Sarawak Acar Timun. This photo really brought a lot of memories back to me.

Image may contain: food
On line photo. Google.

When I was in secondary school, we girls used to exchange recipes. Some even wrote down recipes in books for each other. A friend had a special recipe book all typed. It was an exceptional feat for a school girl and how we admired her.

Most of us just kept an exercise book and some pictures were pasted for fun. We loved the New Straits Times which had a good recipe section. But not all of us had English newspapers at home. So, every recipe from the newspapers was handwritten into our exercise books. But we did not really have that many.

Perhaps we were instinctively preparing for married life. The old saying is "The way to a man's heart is through his stomach." I wonder if it is still true today.

One of the first recipes I learned was this cucumber pickle. And for old times' sake, I am sharing this with you.

5 cucumbers
15 red chillies
1 carrot
3 Tbsp dried prwans
5 cups vinegar
2 cups sugar
some garlic
2 candle nuts
4 dried chillies
some ginger
one knob of kunyit
Oil for frying

1. Prepare early in the morning : Cut cucumber into finger lengths, 1 cm thick. Remove all centres. Soak in 3 tbs salt for a few hours , squeeze .
2. Dry  the sliced cucumber in the sun for half a day.
3. Cut carrot and chillies into thin strips and dry for a while too.
4. Pound garlic and ginger with the dried prawns.
5. Pound candle nut, some more garlic,dried chillies and kunyit.
6. Heat a bit of oil in kuali, fry (4), put in a bowl.
7. Heat a bit of oil in kuali and stir fry (5) until aromatic. Add sugar,vinegar and bring to the boil. Remove the gravy and leave to cool.
8. Add in cucumber, carrot, chillies, (4) and mix well.
9. Keep the pickle in a clean bottle.

If you like you can add some roasted sesame seeds to the pickle before serving.

Our secondary school girls' acar timun....Well, some girls did get the boys they wanted to marry.

For whatever reasons we may have, it is good to be able to make our own cucumber pickles from scratch.

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