Clean the squid. Cut the tubes lengthwise
and use the tip of the knife to lightly score a crisscross pattern on
the surface, without cutting right through. Cut into 5cm squares and set
aside, with the tentacles.
Soak the tamarind pulp in 125ml boiling water
and leave for 5 minutes. Knead to dissolve, then strain the tamarind
water and set aside. Grind, pound or blend the lemongrass, garlic,
drained chilies, belachan and onion together to make a paste.
Heat a wok
until hot, then add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the chili paste
and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the tamarind water, salt and sugar and
stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add the squid meat and tentacles and stir-fry
over high heat for 3-4 minutes, until cooked but still tender.
Serve this spicy, substantial sambal with
a bowl of steamed rice and a platter of stir-fried green beans, as part
of a shared Malaysian meal. Follow with a sticky rice dessert drizzled
with coconut milk and palm sugar.