Belacan Yam Leaf

June 7, 2022


Stir-fried water spinach with shrimp paste, known as kangkung belacan in Malaysia, is a traditional meal.

I do eat a variety of meals, including veggies and other fruits and vegetables.. Even though I intend to change that soon, I don’t upload nearly as many pictures of seafood meals as I do of other foods like tofu, beans, turnip, and bone-in chicken.

As a seafood lover, I’m also a fan of greens, chicken, eggs, and soy products.

Kangkung belacan or water spinach/morning glory with shrimp paste is one of my favorite vegetable dishes, even if it means that my house stinks up a storm!!

Belacan, a shrimp paste native to Malaysia, is an essential component. In Southeast Asian cuisine, shrimp paste is used extensively as a flavor enhancer. The combination of belacan and vegetables is one of the most intriguing stir-fry methods for vegetables because of its strong, spicy, and aromatic flavor. I can’t get enough of the flavor…

Yam leaf/sweet potato leaf is a good substitute for water spinach in today’s dish. Even while it may appear to be simple, achieving perfection is not.

It is extremely crucial to pay attention to the wok hei (breath of the wok) and the time of the meal, because a little too much wok hei or a tad too long in the wok might result in a dish that tastes bitter or overdone veggies that appear purple.

I’m a big fan of this recipe, but I must warn you that it’s not for everyone. However, you should give it a shot because this is possibly the most unique and tasty vegetable dish you’ll ever come across!

Each serving of this recipe contains only 188 calories.


  • 1 box yam leaf
  • 1 tablespoon of belacan/shrimp paste
  • 3 dashes of fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • 3 finely chopped cloves garlic
  • 2 red bird’s eye chilies
  • 1 tablespoon of roasted chili paste
  • 1 tablespoon of dried shrimp


  • 1 handful of dried chilies
  • 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • water


  1. In a blender, combine the dried chiles and cooking oil. While blending, add a small amount of water.
  2. Stir-fry the chili paste for three minutes in hot oil in a wok. Set aside for later.
  3. Coarsely pound the dried shrimp after soaking them in warm water for about 10 minutes. Set aside for later.
  4. To prepare the yam leaves, cut off the stems. Keep only the stems that are most sensitive. Rinse before using.
  5. Pour the cooking oil and bring the heat up to medium-high in the wok. Add the chopped garlic to the wok when it begins to smoke. A quick toss, then add the belacan, dried shrimp, and roasted chili paste and continue stirring. Toss in the yam leaf as soon as the belacan aroma wafts over the air. To wilt the leaves, stir constantly. A few dashes of fish sauce can be added while the mixture is still being stirred.
  6. Serve the food hot and fresh.
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