Chilli-ginger Sauce

This is the traditional sauce served with Hainanese Chicken Rice, at least in Malaysia – but I like it miles too much just to make it once a year….it’s one of those ‘if you’re going to have the chicken, you’ve GOT to have this, but if you’re going to have this, why restrict yourself’ things. 🙂

I like it with plain things like steamed tofu or steamed Chinese cabbage – it also makes an instant sambal mixed with grated carrot, daikon or sour fruit like pineapple or unripe mango – you know when you get a piece of fruit home and it’s not sweet when you cut it open, but you’ve cut it and you don’t know what to do with it? Now you do.  Keeps well in the fridge too.


6 red chillies (the kind that are about 15cm long and 1.5 cm wide, slightly fleshy)

5cm piece of ginger peeled

3 cloves of garlic

Salt to taste

Dash of white rice vinegar, to taste


Chop the chillies, ginger and garlic – I de-seed my chillies, not because I’m a wimp, but because I like the texture better that way. Then, in a mortar and pestle or in a whizzy machine, reduce to a rough paste. Add salt and vinegar – you can just bung everything (already roughly chopped) in together if you’re using a machine, but then blitz it in bursts….it should have a little texture.


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