Terung Pipit Sambal: A Malaysian Delight

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Malaysia, a country renowned for its rich culinary heritage, offers a diverse array of flavors that tantalize taste buds around the globe. One such culinary gem is Terung Pipit Sambal, a spicy and savory dish that embodies the vibrant essence of Malaysian cuisine.

What is Terung Pipit?

Terung Pipit, also known as “pea eggplant” or “pea aubergine,” is a small, green, berry-like vegetable commonly found in Southeast Asian cooking. Despite its tiny size, it packs a punch with its slightly bitter taste, which adds a unique dimension to various dishes.

The Essence of Sambal

Sambal is a staple in Malaysian cooking. It is a chili-based condiment made from a blend of fresh chilies, garlic, shallots, and sometimes shrimp paste (belacan). The result is a spicy, aromatic paste that enhances the flavor of any dish it accompanies. Sambal can vary in heat and complexity, making it a versatile addition to Malaysian cuisine.

Combining Terung Pipit with Sambal

Terung Pipit Sambal is a harmonious blend of these two elements. The preparation involves sautéing the terung pipit with the sambal until the eggplants are tender and infused with the spicy, savory goodness of the paste. The dish often includes other ingredients like onions, garlic, and sometimes small prawns or anchovies to add depth and richness.

How to Make Terung Pipit Sambal

Here’s a simple recipe to try at home:


  • 1 cup terung pipit (pea eggplants)
  • 3-4 tablespoons sambal (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Optional: small prawns or anchovies


  1. Prepare the Ingredients: Rinse the terung pipit and set aside. If using prawns or anchovies, clean them thoroughly.
  2. Sauté the Aromatics: Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic, and sauté until they become fragrant and slightly golden.
  3. Add Sambal: Stir in the sambal, allowing it to cook for a minute or two to release its flavors.
  4. Cook the Terung Pipit: Add the terung pipit (and optional prawns or anchovies) to the pan. Stir well to coat everything with the sambal. Add a little water if the mixture seems too dry.
  5. Simmer: Reduce the heat to low and let the mixture simmer until the terung pipit is tender and has absorbed the flavors of the sambal. Season with salt to taste.
  6. Serve: Serve hot with steamed rice or as a side dish to complement other Malaysian dishes.

A Taste of Malaysia

Terung Pipit Sambal is more than just a dish; it’s a celebration of Malaysia’s culinary diversity. Its bold flavors and simple preparation make it a beloved choice in Malaysian households. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a curious foodie, this dish offers a delightful way to experience the authentic tastes of Malaysia.

By embracing the unique ingredients and traditional methods, Terung Pipit Sambal connects people to the heart of Malaysian culture, one delicious bite at a time.

Article by Muhammad Ghani Rahman