Sambal stingray

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Sambal stingray

Sambal stingray, also known as Spicy Banana Leaf Stingray[1] and by the Malay name Ikan bakar (barbecued fish), is a Singaporean seafood dish. Prepared by barbecuing stingray, it is served with sambal paste atop. Sambal stingray can be easily purchased at food centres in Singapore. Catherine Ling of CNN describes Sambal stingray as one of the "40 Singapore foods we can't live without".[2]


Stingray was previously deemed as not popular and was cheap to purchase; given the enhancement of its taste, the value of stingray in markets has since risen. Originating from Singapore[3] and created by Malays in the country,[4] the dish is now also popular among Malaysians.[3] Its Malay name is Ikan bakar, which literally means barbecued fish.[5]


The sambal paste served with the stingray is made up of spices (sometimes including belachan), Indian walnuts, and shallots.[2] Other ingredients may include garlic, sugar,[1] Chinese parsley, or raw peanuts.[6] The paste is then spread on top of stingray fins,[7] preferably fresh ones. In addition, female ones are preferred to male ones.[8] White fish is in some instances used as an alternative, usually when stingray cannot be found.[3] Flavor enhancers include white pepper or salt.[3] Other recipes involve small amounts of brandy and olive oil.[9] The dish is commonly accompanied with lime or lemon.[3]


Usually wrapped in banana leaves for ten minutes to cook, the fins of the stingray are first chopped to smaller bits.[7] It also can be wrapped in ginger leaves[10] or aluminium foil.[11] Sambal stingray is charcoal-grilled.[3]


Part of Singapore's cuisine, Sambal stingray was one of the many food items showcased at the Singapore Food Festival in 2008.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Hutton, Wendy (2007). Singapore Food. Marshall Cavendish. p. 107. ISBN 9789812613219. 
  2. ^ a b Ling, Catherine (April 14, 2010). "40 Singapore foods we can't live without". CNN. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f Wong, David (1995). The Food of Singapore: Authentic Recipes from the Manhattan of the East. Tuttle. p. 80. ISBN 9789625930077. 
  4. ^ Slater, Judith J. Teen Life in Asia. Greenwood. p. 196. ISBN 9780313315329. 
  5. ^ Tiwary, Shiv Shanker. Encyclopaedia Of Southeast Asia And Its Tribes (Set Of 3 Vols.). Anmol. p. 195. ISBN 9788126138371. 
  6. ^ "Sambal Stingray in Banana Leaf". The New York Times. November 2, 2010. 
  7. ^ a b Lin, Eddie (2009). Extreme Cuisine. Lonely Planet. p. 119. ISBN 9781741798869. 
  8. ^ "8 popular BBQ Stingray stalls". AsiaOne. May 21, 2010. 
  9. ^ Burns, Wendy (2012). From Me to You: Welcome to My Kitchen. Xlibris Corporation. p. 74. ISBN 9781477136256. 
  10. ^ Food Arts 14. Food Arts. 2001. 
  11. ^ Chia, Adeline (May 6, 2007). "Sambal stingray, mmm, oiishi". AsiaOne. 
  12. ^ Tan, Rebecca Lynne (July 6, 2008). "Gorge on over 30 items this weekend at the Sentosa BBQ".