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Crunchy vegetables with Indonesian sour dipping sauce

This is a contemporary rendition of Indonesian flavours. The dip is magical, with only three ingredients. It is sweet, tart and spicy, all strong flavours that merge. Also, surprisingly, unlike a traditional cruditè plate, there is a combination of vegetables and fruit. They both go beautifully with the bold dip. This is an addictive and fun platter to start a dinner with.

This is a wonderful modern cookbook that explores Indonesian cuisine. It is a wonderful introduction to this otherwise complex cuisine, filled with excellent photographs and recipes. Eleanor Ford is a food writer and spice expert. Her latest cookbook, A Whisper of Cardamom, is a sweetly spiced companion book to The Nutmeg Trail. The Nutmeg Trail, published in 2022, has won and been shortlisted for a variety of international awards, including winning best ‘International or Regional Cookbook’ at The Guild of Food Writers Awards 2023 and two Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2023.

For more recipes from this cookbook, click here.


1/4 cup palm sugar or jaggery

2-3 dried red chillies, ground, or chilli powder

2 tablespoons tamarind concentrate

Salt, to taste

For the vegetables:

Green apples, sliced

Pineapple, sliced

Carrots cut into batons

Cucumbers, cut into batons

Red or yellow pepper cut into slivers

Heat the jaggery on very low heat with the chilli, tamarind, and salt until you have a thick syrup. This will take about 8-10 minutes. Be careful not to burn the jaggery at the end. Remove and cool.

Serve with the slivered vegetables and fruit.

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