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All-Purpose Balinese Bumbu

All-Purpose Balinese Bumbu

In Bali, in Indonesia, this spice paste is the foundation for all sorts of dishes, particularly for meat, fish, and poultry marinades. Feel free to make a double recipe, you can freeze the extra spice paste for months. 


3 cloves garlic

6 shallots

3 bird’s eye chilies

½ inch fresh galangal

½ inch fresh ginger

2 inches fresh turmeric

½ tsp cumin, toasted and ground

½ Tbsp coriander seed, ground

1 kaffir lime leaf, minced

1 tsp kentjur, ground

2 green cardamom pods, ground

½ tsp white pepper, ground

½ tsp nutmeg, ground

½ tsp long pepper, ground

½ tsp shrimp paste (trassi)


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    Reduce all ingredients to a fine paste in a food processor, or if you prefer, in a rough mortar, like with a sambal oelek.