Hot and tangy, this is great tossed in a green mango and cucumber salad or served with grilled calamari and fish.
1/2 cup vegetable oil
6 red onions, peeled and sliced
10 red birds-eye chillies, roughly chopped*
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and thickly sliced
2 knobs of ginger, peeled and chopped
100g dried shrimp**
3 tbsp tamarind puree**
70g palm sugar, grated or chopped (use brown sugar if unavailable)
2 tbsp fish sauce
1/4 cup water
*To make the jam less hot, discard the seeds and membrane **
Dried shrimp and tamarind puree can be bought at Asian supermarkets
Heat the oil in a wok and add the onion. Cook, stirring, over a medium heat for several minutes until golden brown.
Add the chopped chillies, garlic and ginger and cook, stirring, for another few minutes. It should be a deep golden colour.
Add the dried shrimp, cook for a few minutes then add the tamarind puree, palm sugar and fish sauce. Stir to combine and cook for another few minutes to dissolve the sugar and cook out the tamarind.
Remove from the heat and place the mixture in a food processor. Blend until you have a paste. You will need to add about 1/4 cup of water to help bring everything together.
The jam keeps very well in a jar in the refrigerator, covered with a little oil.