Atjar Tjampoer is an Indonesian-Dutch sweet and sour pickled vegetable dish. The word “tjampoer” which means “mixed”, is a reference to several types of vegetables used to make the dish.
Atjar Tjampoer originated in the East Indies and traveled with Dutch sailors around the globe, evolving along the way to suit local tastes and condiitions.
This dish is still popular among the descendants of both the colonizers and colonized. It’s an everyday food not only in the Netherlands but also in Indonesia. Its sourness cuts through rich dishes, and its sweetness offsets spicy ones.
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Recipe courtesy of Marelie Maritz-Manders
- 1 cucumber
- 1 red bell pepper
- 250g carrots, peeled
- 200g green beans
- ½ cabbage
- ½ cauliflower
- 2cm fresh ginger
- 2 pips garlic
- 1 tsp turmeric
- A pinch of salt
- 100ml vinegar
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- Halve cucumber lengthwise. Scrape out seeds with a spoon and cut cucumber into thin slices.
- Halve bell pepper and remove seeds. Cut the pepper and the carrot into long, thin slices.
- Top and tail green beans.
- Cut cabbage into small strips.
- Boil water in a pot and prepare another bowl with cold water.
- Cut up cauliflower into small florets.
- Blanch each vegetable separately for 2 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes in cold water. Strain and set aside.
- Peel ginger and cut it into pieces.
- Grind ginger and garlic in a mortar and pestle and mix with turmeric and salt.
- Boil vinegar with sugar and add ginger-garlic paste. Boil for 3 minutes before adding blanched vegetables. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool before transferring into a jar or container.
- Atjar Tjampoer tastes best after it sits for several days for the flavours to fully develop.
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