Basil Sambal Goreng Tempeh (Vegan)

March 6, 2023

The heart of a good sambal goreng is the sambal itself, and this version is fragrant with garlic, shallots, the tang of tamarind, and the defining warmth of birds eye/ chilli pad chilles. An easy go-to dish, everyone will just love the tempeh as it is is both air fried and then pan-fried in the sauce to make it wonderfully crunchy, nutty, and toasty. 


Sambal Paste

1 tomato roughly chopped.

3 garlic cloves (roughly chopped).

1 medium shallot (roughly chopped).

2 big red chillies (roughly chopped).

2 chilli padi (birds eye chilli) roughly chopped

Other Ingredients

235 g tempeh (cut into 8-10 pieces).

6 tbsp plant based Nuttelex

1 tsp brown sugar

1 tsp tamarind paste.

1 tsp kicap/kepap manis (sweet soy)

1 handful basil leaves.

chilie padi (birds eye chilli) roughly chopped

salt to taste


air fryer

fry pan


1Brush some Nuttelex on the sliced tempeh, and air-fry them for 10 minutes at 180-190 degrees C, or until golden brown. Set aside

2Blend all the ingredients together for the sambal paste until smooth

3Heat pan with the remaining Nuttelex on medium high and add sambal paste, sugar and tamarind paste.

4Stir fry for about 2 minutes until the sambal paste darkens, and the oil separates

5Add in tempeh, basil leaves, chilli padi and kicap manis. Stir fry for about 1 minute or until the basil leaves have wilted.

6Add salt to taste

7Transfer basil sambal goreng tempeh to a serving plate and serve immediately.