The Humble Petai Has Many Health Benefits

Like durians, you probably have to acquire a taste for petai beans. These flat, pungent and slightly bitter beans are cheap and readily available yet they are packed with valuable nutrients. Petai beans are also said to lower blood pressure and treat anaemia.

I have cooked this humble dish numerous times. The following pictures show petai with shrimp. It imparts its unique odour to your urine and sweat, but once you’ve tried petai beans, chances are, you’ll be asking for more.

First, fry some sliced onions in oil until they start to brown.

Next to go in, the petai beans. Stir fry and smell the “fragrance”.

Add prawns/shrimp next. For flavours, add one teaspoon of sambal and a dash of soya sauce.

This is what it should look like.

A beautiful, flavourful dish that goes very well with rice.

© Chan Joon Yee

Petai With Shrimp

I normally cook petai with ikan bilis, but this humble petai bean goes well with shrimp too. The cooking method is more or less the same. Heat up some oil (be generous), fry sliced onion until the latter starts to brown. Throw in the petai beans, turn up the heat, fry for half a minute, then throw in the shrimp. Once the shrimp turns red, put in one tea spoonful of sambal, one teaspoon of sugar and drizzle some light soya sauce over it.

The kids may not appreciate the sambal, but it’s another great accompaniment to white rice.

© Chan Joon Yee