Feast your eyes! Vanu, Owner & Head Chef at Kanama Kopi Kadai in Kilbirnie has generously shared his Muthu's (mother’s) Nyonya Acar recipe for us 

to make this traditional Malaysian dish at home.

"These pickled vegetables are sweet, sour and crunchy. The acar is so tasty that you will keep wanting more!" say Vanu.


RECIPE Keep it Local and purchase the ingredients from The Spice Emporium NZ, The Produce House and Asian Food Specialist
100g red chilli (deseeded & chopped), 50g dried red chilli (soaked & deseeded), 8 shallots, 6 garlic cloves, 5 candlenuts, 2 fresh turmeric, 1 stallk lemongrass (chopped), 200ml tamarind juice, 4 tbsp cooking oil, sugar to taste. 150g long beans, 100g carrots, 300g cucumber, 200g cabbage all cut into 2.5cm sticks. 100g peanuts (roasted & crushed) 1tbsp salt, sesame seeds to garnish.

METHOD: 1. Add salt to carrot & cucumber. Mix well and set aside for 20 minutes. 2.Squeeze water from mixture. Set aside and let dry. 3.Blanch long beans and cabbage for 30 seconds. Pat dry & set aside. 4.Blend together red chillies, dried red chillies, shallots, garlic, candlenuts, fresh turmeric and lemongrass to a fine paste. Add a little oil if it's too dry. Add sugar to taste. 5.Heat oil on medium low. 6.Add paste and saute till dark and fragrant. 7.Add tamarind juice and sugar. Saute until it boils. Turn off heat. 8. Add vegetables and peanuts. Mix until well-coated. Jom makan! (Let's eat!)

Vanu's tip: Storing it in an airtight container and keeping it overnight in the refrigerator enhances the flavour.