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Simple Acar Recipes That You Will Love

Updated on February 21, 2015

Acar is a type of condiment popular in Southeast Asia especially in countries like Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore. It is widely cooked among the Chinese, Malay and Indians. Due to different culture’s tastes and preferences, variants of acar recipe emerge like Nyonya acar, Malay acar, Chinese acar, and so on. This local delicacy is often served as a condiment to be eaten with main course.

Acar consists of thin strip of vegetables such as cucumber, long beans, carrots, cabbage and onion marinated in a sweet and sour sugar and vinegar. It is best to toss these one-inch cut vegetables in ground peanuts before serving. Some recipe also adds in ginger and chilies.

Here is my own version of Acar which is simple and straight forward:


1 cucumber

1 carrot

½ big yellow onion

3 tbsp vinegar

1 tbsp pounced garlic

4 tbsp of pounced peanut

Salt and sugar to taste

1 cup water


1. Cut the big onion into 4 and sliced it.

2. Cut cucumber and carrot into thin strips, about 2 inches strips. Soak in salt water ( about 1 tbsp of salt and 1 cup of water) for half an hour.

3. Heat some oil in pan. Sautee garlic till fragrant.

4. Add in water and vinegar.

5. When the water and vinegar is boiled, add in cucumber, carrot, big onion. Stir well for about 2 - 3 minutes. Season the mixture with salt and sugar.

6. Dish up and keep in the refrigerator overnight.

7. Sprinkle with pounced peanuts before serving.


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    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 6 years ago

      Thank you, jojokaya. :)

    • jojokaya profile image

      jojokaya 6 years ago from USA

      This is my favorite. Easy to make and light. Awesome up

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Hmmm... Nasi Goreng, Sate Ayam with Acar, simply delicious !!

    • profile image

      Thebean11 7 years ago

      Wow..I have just found this and will be making it tonight to have on the side of our nasi Goreng and Sate Ayam...cant wait...Thankyou

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Nasi Beriyani, yummy yummy... thanks,sord87.

    • profile image

      sord87 7 years ago

      Since you know the recipes of acar,i would suggest you to get for nasi beriyani too.In Malaysia they serve nasi beriyani together with acar,you can find it everywhere at any food stalls and restaurant in Malaysia.

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Yes, this isn't authentic Chinese food. It's Chinese fusion food from Malay.

      Ferment it through overnight would definitely give you a better taste. I try to keep the recipe simple here.

      Adding sesame seeds is a good option. However, since I have added nutes, I try to keep it simple, but you can add sesame seeds for the taste too.

    • telltale profile image

      telltale 7 years ago

      Thanks for the variation of acar, from the picture, it does not look Chinese. Always thought you need to let it ferment abit, like overnight at least before eating, so that the ingredients have been absorbed by the vegetables, of course, that is the version I know. Didn't see you use sesame seeds also. Would like to try out your recipe one day. Thanks again!

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Definitely, thanks, habee.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

      This sounds great! And it's healthy, too. A win-win dish! lol

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Thanks, Nellieanna. I am curious about your "hot salad", hope you can share it with us one day ! :)

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 7 years ago from TEXAS

      Indeed this does sound mouth-watering! Reminds me that my George always called my own style vegetable soup a "hot salad" - because I just barely cook the veggies. The marinating would eliminate the need for much if any cooking! - I also love adding fresh ginger root to it and to all sorts of other things. That fresh cilantro sounds ideal too, davidisaiah. I love mint but only in certain kinds of dishes. It might conflict with some of the other flavors in this. Let us know how it works out!

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Thanks, Money Glitch and Alison.

    • Alison Graham profile image

      Alison Graham 7 years ago from UK

      This sounds absolutely delicious, I am definitely going to try it. Have bookmarked this hub for reference, thanks so much.

    • Money Glitch profile image

      Money Glitch 7 years ago from Texas

      This sound wonderfully quick easy and very tasty. Thanks for sharing the recipe. :)

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      I cannot resist acar whenever I see it too. :)

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      I liked acar very much. It good to eat with noodles. Hmmmm...yummy.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 7 years ago from England

      Hi, this is a great idea, I love to learn something new about cooking, thanks nell

    • davidisaiah profile image

      davidisaiah 7 years ago from Klamath Falls, Oregon

      This sounds wonderful. I have mint growing in my garden as well as cilantro...will add these for flavor and color.