Assam Pedas, or literally “sour spicy,” is a classic Malaysian dish. Ask any home cooks in Malaysia — Malay, Chinese, or Indian — and you are bound to get various recipes for Assam Pedas.  Asam Pedas fish curry is tangy, spicy and appetising. This fish curry is best served with rice.


1kg fish (you can use any fish to your liking. eg: pomfret, grouper, mackerel, etc.)

10 small okras

1 tomato, cut into wedges

1 teaspoon of fish curry powder

2 sprigs of daun kesum, mint/coriander

5 tablespoons cooking oil

1 tablespoon palm sugar/sugar

Salt to taste

Spice Paste:

1 clove garlic

1 stalk of lemongrass, white part only

4 shallots

8-10 dried chillies, depends how spicy you like

1/2 tablespoon belacan, prawn paste

Tamarind Juice:

1 1/4 cup water

Tamarind pulp, size of a small ping pong ball


1. Pound the spice paste with mortar and pestle or grind them in a food processor. Set aside.

2. Soak the tamarind pulp in warm water for 15 minutes. Squeeze the tamarind pulp constantly to extract the flavor into the water. Drain the pulp and save the tamarind juice.

3. Heat oil and fry the spice paste for 2 minutes or until fragrant.

4. Add the tamarind juice, fish curry powder and bring to boil.

5. Add the tomato wedges, okras and daun kesom and bring to boil.

6. Add the fish, salt, and palm sugar/sugar.

7. Simmer on low heat for 5 minutes or until the fish is cooked.

8. Serve hot.