HomeRecipesSeafoodsquidAssam Squid (Sotong)

Assam or tamarind is commonly used in Malay cooking to give the curry or gravy a sour taste.  In this recipe, we are using lemon to do the trick, and lemon has its own fragrance to give the dish a twist.  This recipe caters for a little more gravy that you could go with steam rice.


  1. 2 big Squid (Sotong)
  2. 4 table spoon curry powder for fish (get from supermarket)
  3. 4 table spoon sugar
  4. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  5. 1/2 to 1 lemon – depends on desired sourness
  6. 1 big onion
  7. 4 table spoon cooking oil
  8. 1 cup water


  1. Wash the squid and remove the head.  Remove the back-bone of the squid (a transparent strip that runs along the length of the squid body.  Remove the skin of the squid. (you can do it with your finger nails or a knife, scrape off a little and you can pull it off easily).  For the squid head, cut away the eyes, and also squeeze out the “ball” from the mouth of the squid (its quite hard to eat). 
  2. You can make a cut through the length of the squid body, hence opening up the tube shape to a flat piece of meat.  Then cut into strips perpendicular to the length of the squid, about 1 cm width.  Lightly score criss cross lines with sharp knife on the side that was the inside of the squid.
  3. Put in bowl and add salt, sugar and curry powder and mix.  Optional you may add some chilli paste to make it more spicy (the curry powder is already spicy).  Leave to season for 30 mins.
  4. Peel onion and slice, set aside.
  5. Squeeze lemon for the juice and set aside.
  6. Heat up pan, add oil and onion , fry till fragrant.
  7. Add in seasoned squid and fry till curled up. Add water and allow to boil for 3 mins. Add in lemon juice (you may add half first and taste, and if you like it more sour, then add a little more, otherwise it may be too sour and you cannot do anything about it.) Once lemon juice is added and slightly boil, you may remove from heat.  Do not further boil as the fragrant of lemon may go away, and over cooking squid will make it tough.
  8. Serve with steam rice.


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