Keripic: caramelised chilli & kamrut lime crisps

Caramel, chilli, kamrut lime, kamrut, crisps, potato, potatoes, Indonesia, Indonesian, keripic, kripik, food, foodie, home cook, homecook, recipe, delicious

I first tried these fabulously addictive crisps at an Indonesian restaurant many decades ago and I still adore making them either for a snack or as an accompaniment to a meal.

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Keripik (or Kripik) are essentially potato crisps with a well flavoured caramel coating. You simply dive in and break off what you want to devour: in every mouthful you get crispy bits, chewy bits and full-on flavour.

You can go for all manner of flavours here, but for me it’s the flavours of kamrut lime, garlic and chilli that work best.

While I sometimes slice potatoes thinly and oven-bake them until crispy, I tend to make these using good quality lightly salted crisps*: ideally ridged so the flavours get into those ridges, but it works well with flat crisps. But if using bought crisps, this takes about 5 minutes to get these made and on the table!

* if the crisps are too salty you can lightly pat them in kitchen towels or a clean tea towel to remove a lot of the excess salt.

I sometimes use some finely chopped fresh chillies, but I often simply use a couple of tablespoons of a good chilli sauce: the Chilli Garlic Sauce from Lee Kum Kee is excellent, as is sriracha. But I’ve even gone slightly Korean before and used gochuchang.

You could even use a sweet chilli sauce, but omit the sugar from the recipe below.

You can also add some finely chopped lemongrass with the kamrut lime for added punch, but this is by no means essential.

And instead of crisps, you could use this caramel poured over just-baked potato wedges. Or toss some unsalted peanuts or pistachios in the caramel…..

Recipe: caramelised chilli & kamrut lime crisps – serves 3-4

For the caramel:
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, peeled and very finely chopped
  • 3 kamrut lime leaves, stem discarded and leaves very finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 3 tablespoons chilli sauce (see above)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (caster, soft brown, palm…)
  • 2 teaspoons cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon stem ginger syrup, optional
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped nuts such as cashews, pistachios or unsalted peanuts, optional
To finish:
  • 100g lightly salted crisps (ideally thick and ridged if possible)

(1) Heat the oil in a large pan or wok over a medium heat until warmed up and then add the onions. Cook for about a minute, stirring from time to time, until the onions just start to turn brown.

(2) Add the kamrut lime and garlic and, still on a medium heat, stir for about 20 seconds to release the gorgeous aromas and flavours.

(3) Add the remaining caramel ingredients and let it all simmer for about a minute or two over a medium heat, until it reduces a little and becomes slightly syrupy: don’t take it too far as the sugar can burn very quickly.

(4) Turn off the heat and add the crisps to the pan Very gently toss the crisps in the sticky sauce so that they get a good coating.

(5) Empty onto a serving plate and leave to cool fully, by which time the sauce will have firmed up to a light caramel.

Author: Philip

Finalist on Britain’s Best Home Cook (BBC Television 2018). Published recipe writer with a love of growing fruit & veg, cooking, teaching and eating good food.

3 thoughts on “Keripic: caramelised chilli & kamrut lime crisps”

  1. what an interesting idea. i’ve never seen anything like this tho i have made chocolate-coated crisps or chocolate bark covered in bits of salty crisps! So delish!


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