Pickled Tomato and Onion sambal (Uie en tamatie slaai) is a delicious relish of chopped or finely sliced fresh vegetables that can be served with akni, curries, bunny chow or even grilled meats.
This is such a simple salad relish to make using only pantry staples and it will bring an element of sweet and sour that can counteract the spiciness of akni or curry.
I recently ate tomato and onion sambal in Zanzibar as an accompaniment to a dish of curry and pulao rice. The vegetables were sliced in julienne strips and had the sweet and sour taste of a vinegar and sugar pickling juice but were still crunchy. There was no pickling liquid, and I realised that the liquor in our pickled tomato and onion sambal is as essential to the meal experience as the actual vegetables.
Here in Dubai I’ve eated chopped tomato and onion sambal from two different restaurants, both served with bunny chow. I must confess I didn’t eat the bread but did love the taste of the curry, that reminded me of my mother’s lamb curry. The dice on the vegetables for both the tomato and onion sambal offerings was either too big or too small. I had never even realised until then how much size matters when it comes to the visual impact and mouth feel of the tomato and onion sambal.
One of the tomato and onion sambal had very little pickling liquid flavor and the other one tasted just right and brought to mind my last plate of Katriena’s Mouthwatering Chicken Akni recipe (chicken pulao) served with a perfectly seasoned pickled tomato and onion sambal.
This is a very forgiving recipe and can be tailored to your preferred spiciness and sweet and sour levels. Adjust the amount of vinegar and sugar as well as adding chili to taste.
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Pickled Tomato and Onion sambal (Uie en tamatie slaai)
- 140 g tomato, diced approximately 1 large
- 140 g onion, peeled and diced approximately 1/2 large
- 10 ml granulated white sugar approximately 2 tsp
- 60 ml white grape vinegar or apple cider vinegar approximately 1/4 cup
- 1 chilli, chopped, optional
- 5 ml chopped fresh coriander or parsley approximately 1 tsp
- salt and pepper to taste
- Add the sugar and vinegar to a medium sized bowl and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Chop the tomato and onion and place in the bowl and stir into the vinegar mixture.
- If using, add the chopped chili.
- Add the chopped coriander or parsley and stir to combine.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Cover with cling wrap and leave in the fridge for at least 10 minutes before using. This will help the flavors develop.
Disclaimer: Nutritional information for the recipe is an approximation and varies according to the ingredients and products used.
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