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Celine Marbeck's Cristang Recipes
This introduces you for the first time to the Cristang, a little-known community, and their even less-known – but no less palate-pleasing – intoxicatingly delicious cuisine!  Every recipe is a delectable jewel that makes up Celine Marbeck’s culinary treasure trove – recipes that have been handed down from one generation (sometimes only through word of mouth) to another, in a family of proud Portuguese-Dutch ancestry. Malacca, the cradle of Cristang cuisine and culture, is a veritable melting pot of other Asian cultures and culinary traditions besides. The Cristang repertoire has had little choice but to incorporate the richness and diversity of these cuisines and cultures in its own table offerings.  Given the infusion of modern Asian and European tastes, each family follows its own culinary path, concocting dishes that reflect the myriad influences which have come to characterize the cuisine. Dishes vary from family to family, perhaps even between one cook and another within the same family. Relatively bland European fare brought by the Portuguese evolved into delectably spicy hybrids with the infusion of local spices, fresh herbs, buds, shoots, leaves and flowers. This mélange of herbs, spices, coconut milk and the flavoursome dried shrimp paste or belachan, now acknowledges the European influence when a dash of wine, sherry or brandy is added to “bring out the full flavour.”

These are a selection of a few family Cristang recipes, for you to try. Do let me know what you think about them.
To search for the recipes use CTRL+F in your browser and type in the word.

 
a.k.a. Curry Devil, is the quintessential Christmas dish but usually cooked on Boxing Day to make use of the left-over meats from the previous day’s feasting. The various types of this curry reflects each family's choice of ingredients. There is no one authentic curry debal as all are authentic.
Ingredients Method
Fisherman’s Soup, is an enormously satisfying in its simplicity, the soup was traditionally cooked right on the beach itself, by hungry fishermen returning with their hard-won catch. To keep up their strength for the long day ahead, they laced it with a jigger of brandy. Caldu Pescador is still cooked the traditional way during the Feast of St Peter (“Festa San Pedro”, in the local Cristang dialect, usually observed on 29th June), the Patron Saint of Fishermen.
Ingredients Method
The dish is old that there's no picture This old Portuguese recipe is also popular in Macau. Cristang remember the recipe but sadly no longer cook it.
Ingredients Method

SAMBAL CHILI BEDRI

Green chilli sambal, is one sambal that definitely makes a statement! Green chillies replace the usual red ones, adding a spicy kick without the fiery bite. Versatile but entirely Cristang in character, the rich shredded coconut adds a full-bodied flavour to pork or prawns, and is delicious on its own with rice or as a sandwich filling.
Ingredients Method

CHICKEN STEW PIE/guilinhia pia

Chicken pie has always been part of the Christmas eve midnight supper menu, along with Teem - pork and salted vegetable soup and beer boiled ham. The dish is probably British influenced and the use of flour when flour was introduced to the country.
Ingredients Method
Braised pork in soy-galangal sauce, definitely Chinese-influenced, this dish is usually cooked with belly pork, pigs’ ears and sometimes intestines, is made fragrant with the use of whole sweet spices like cinnamon, cloves and star anise, and served on a green shredded salad.
Ingredients Method
Pangsusis is a little meat bun made by the Cristang for auspicious and festive occasions. You would find this savoury meat bun usually served at Easter. The dough is bread-like and is sweet.
Ingredients Method
Fried brinjal in soy-lime sauce, is a simple, quick-to-the-table vegetable dish where the usually bland brinjal is brilliantly counter-pointed by a light but piquant soy-lime juice sauce.
Ingredients Method
Fried peppered beef steaks - Evocative of lazy, hazy afternoons of colonial times past, this dish was the epitome of “club” fare served on airy verandahs, washed down with a cool beer to stave off the heat of the day.
Ingredients Method
Fried fish in sweet ginger sauce - although a very traditional Cristang recipe, it has definite Chinese and Thai overtones. The dish is not often seen or served outside the home nowadays.
Ingredients Method
A coconut vegetable stew, is a typical World War 2 concoction; food was scarce and desperate times called for desperate measures. Innovative cooks stewed ingredients fresh from their gardens in protein-rich coconut milk, to produce a hearty one-pot meal.
Ingredients Method
Mungbean broth - This hearty porridge of dried mung beans is cooked in palm sugar and made aromatic with fresh screw pine leaves. It is usually served in conjunction with the feast day of St John the Baptist (Festa da San Juang) when the pathways of Cristang homes are lined with lighted candles and Cristang children  dress in green. Even the fishermen don striped green pajamas and walk about the village  offering bowls of the broth.
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SUGEE CAKE

A hallmark of Cristang families, a sugee cake is baked for special occasions, like Christmas, weddings, baptisms and even funerals.
Ingredients Method
 
 
 
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