Batu Lesung or Mortar and Pestle (local slang Tumbok/Punch)
Large Mixing Bowl
2 x Tray / Dish 50cm diameter with 2cm sides
Clean fish and remove scales but leave skin on. Cut fish into equal size portions, approximately 200gm each and place on a tray.
Peel 4 pieces of Turmeric and place in mortar along with 3 pieces of lemongrass stalks cut into 10cm lengths. Add one dessert spoon of salt (or to taste). Grind ingredients with the pestle until they become a lumpy paste.
Rub the seasoning onto the skin of all the pieces of fish. Cover the fish with a banana leaf if available or other cover. For best flavour, place the tray in the fridge for half an hour.
Peel all the ginger, garlic, cekur rhizomes along with 4 pieces of turmeric, and place into the mortar along with 3 stalks of lemongrass cut into 10cm lengths. Add in 5 leaves of cekur and 20 grams of shrimp paste, Cut the onions as well as 3 red and 3 green chilis into small pieces and add into the mortar. Use the pestle to grind the ingredients into a lumpy paste. (this may take a few minutes).
Cooking the fish:
Place the wok on high heat and add in 3 tablespoons of cooking oil, Wait until the oil is hot, then place 2 pieces of fish at a time in the oil. Cook for one minute on each side, remove and place in a tray. When all cooked, cover the tray with banana leaf or other cover.
Add the sauce into the wok and cook until mixture is slightly golden colour. Add two cups of water and 5 chopped leaves of Cekur. Bring mixture to a simmer then add 2 cups of coconut milk. Bring to simmer again and wait for 2 minutes before adding all the fish and the belimbing buluh. Cover the wok with a banana leaf (or wok lid) and cook for 15 – 20 minutes, until the fish is cooked all the way through. Add salt and brown sugar to taste.