Spicy-Sweet Anchovies (Dilis) Recipe


  • 1 tsp. sesame seeds
  • 2 Tbsps. cooking oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/4 kilo dried salted anchovies (dilis)
  • 1/2 tsp. rock salt
  • pinch of fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. powdered red chillies to start (adjust to taste)
  • 3 Tbsps. brown sugar to start (adjust to taste)

Spicy-Sweet Anchovies (Dilis) Recipe


  1. Start by toasting the sesame seeds in a hot pan over low heat. Shake the pan to toast the seeds evenly. When they turn golden brown and aromatic (about 2 minutes), remove from heat and transfer to a bowl to cool.
  2. In the same pan over medium heat, add in the cooking oil. Put in the garlic and fry until just brown. Add in the anchovies. Stir-fry for a minute, making sure to cook them evenly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and then add in the powdered red chilies, distributing evenly throughout. Add in the brown sugar. Mix well to coat the anchovies. Once the brown sugar has caramelised, turn off the heat.
  3. Toss the anchovies with the sesame seeds while still in the pan. Transfer the anchovies into a serving bowl and let stand for a few minutes before serving. This will be hot!


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