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Cik Saniah’s pineapple pajeri @ Pajeri nanas Cik Saniah

bermudik ke hilir di kala senja,

tiba di parit memasang joran,

pajeri nanas diidam sentiasa,

hidangan tradisi dilupa jangan.

The above is what we call ‘pantun’ in Malay. Could be made up of a verse or more, each with four lines…all beautifully rymed.

I am a lover of authentic Malay cuisine. Its uniqueness lies in its simplicity in both ingredients and instructions. Not just that, the stone and wooden tools like pestle and mortar, grinding stone and slab, charcoal stove, and the wooden coconut grater will elevate the true flavour and authenticity of the Malay cuisine.

IMG 3884 1 WEB2 2 gourmetwhisk by mazmin shariff

It didn’t take long before modernization and convenience took over and overruled the kitchen traditions in many households. Although running an authentic Malay kitchen (with all sizes of grind-stones, mortar and pestles, wooden trays, charcoal stove) is my dream, I wouldn’t be able to keep up with many other tasks if I were to do so. That is the only thing I have to compromise in order to speed things up in the kitchen.

IMG 3905 1 WEB2 4 gourmetwhisk by mazmin shariff

Now going back to the recipe I’m sharing today. Pajeri is a vegan dish, though adding some dried shrimps will definitely heighten its flavour. When choosing pineapples, the sourish variety will make the gravy more flavourful. If you’re not really into pineapples, try aubergine or ‘kedondong’ (seriously I couldn’t find an equivalent English word for this fruit) instead.

IMG 3893 1 WEB2 3 gourmetwhisk by mazmin shariff

Why pineapple pajeri? Because it is the best thing that goes with a plate of steaming white rice. It’s a dish that is able to please anyone. Ithink that is why pajeri is quite synonymous with the Malay wedding because it is such a crowd-pleaser. Serve it with white rice, some fried salted fish sambal belacan. Heaven!

IMG 3891 1 WEB2 5 gourmetwhisk by mazmin shariff

The recipe I’m sharing here is very special as it was taught by a neighbor of mine, Cik Saniah, when I was staying in the East Coast. Of all the dishes she cooked and shared with us, this is definitely her best and unforgettable one. I think it has to do with her being a Perakkian. Perakkians are among the best Malay cooks that would diligently preserve the authentic practices of Malay cooking.

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The herbs and spices used in this dish lend a fragrant and flavourful taste to this dish, if used sparingly. Otherwise, the taste can be unpleasantly pungent. I am also a big fan of candlenut as it adds a subtle thickness and creaminess to this gravy. So never skip these spices.

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While you’re stirring the pajeri in the earthen pot, why don’t you get some fried fish ready? Just coat your favourite fish with some turmeric and salt, before deep frying them.

When I made this dish for the purpose of sharing the photos in this post, the kids were beaming with excitement, knowing that they would eventually get to eat this.

To the recipe owner, Cik Saniah, I will always cherish this gift of yours. Thank you!

IMG 3955 1 WEB2 5 gourmetwhisk by mazmin shariff

Cik Saniah’s pineapple pajeri

Recipe by Mazmin ShariffCourse: MainCuisine: MalayDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time






  • 3 tablespoon coconut oil

  • 1/2 pineapple (about 400 grams)

  • 1 medium sized cinnamon stick

  • 5 pieces cardamon (pounded till powdery)

  • 3 pieces star anise

  • 5 cloves

  • 5 candlenut (pounded)

  • 2 tablespoons dried shrimps (pounded)

  • 5 cloves garlic (pounded)

  • 3 shallots (pounded)

  • 1 tablespoon blended dried chilli

  • 1 teaspoon pounded ginger

  • 1 tablespoons meat curry powder

  • 1 small stalk curry leaves

  • 1 tablespoon kerisik

  • 1/4 cup coconut milk

  • 2 tablespoon ‘gula melaka’ or brown sugar

  • salt to taste


  • In an earthen pot, heat coconut oil.
  • Stir fry cinnamon stick, cardamom, star anise, cloves, candlenut, dried shrimps, garlic, shallot, blended dried chili, ginger, curry powder and curry leaves till fragrant.
  • Turn heat down and add sliced pineapple. Turn each piece upside down after 5-7 minutes. The pineapple will release its juice. Stir to make sure the bottom of the pot doesn’t burn.
  • Once the pineapple pieces become tender, add 1/2 to 1 cup of water (gravy should be thick) and let simmer.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients. Stir while it simmers.
  • Add more sugar or salt if necessary.

Pajeri nanas Cik Saniah

Kami dan pajeri nanas memang tidak dapat dipisahkan. Cukuplah pajeri nanas dan nasi putih menjadi hidangan. Tapi jika ditambah ikan goreng panas dan ulam timun, lebih lengkap lah hidangan. Selera pun makin bertambah.

Pajeri nanas sangat sinonim dengan kenduri kahwin orang Melayu kita. Sebab tak terlalu pedas mungkin, jadi semua lapisan umur boleh menikmati lauk ni bersama nasi putih. Dan setiap negeri ada versi pajeri nanas sendiri. Ada yang tambah santan, ada yang tidak. Ada yang pedas dan ada yang manis. Ada yang pekat ada yang cair.

Jika nanas bukan pilihan, boleh diganti kedondong atau terung. Kami tetap dengan nanas kami. 🙂 Dan kali ni, resipi lauk asli Melayu ni bukannya dari chef atau penulis terkenal. Kadang-kadang, resipi yang paling kena dengan selera kami dimasak oleh suri rumah yang memang kerjanya memasak 3 kali sehari.

Resipi hari ni kami dapat dari Cik Saniah. Cik Saniah ni ialah jiran depan rumah kami semasa kami duduk di Terengganu dulu. Antara lauk-pauk yang dia beri, pajeri nanas lah yang kekal di ingatan. Tak pernah tak habis licin setiap kali dapat semangkuk. Selepas berpuluh kali makan pajeri nanas Cik Saniah ni, kami akhirnya bertekad nak cuba masak sendiri. Jadi, pada satu hari, kami berguru cara memasak pajeri nanas di dapur Cik Saniah sendiri.

Lauk pajeri ni sedap dihidang bersama ikan goreng panas-panas. Nasi pun kena panas. Ulam timun cukup sebagai sayur. Sambal belacan ada lagi bagus.

Kepada Cik Saniah, tiap kali makan pajeri, maka ketika itulah ingatan kami pada Cik Saniah paling kuat. Terima kasih tau!



6 pax


15 minit


15 minit


15 Ringgit


  • 3 sudu besar minyak masak

  • 1/2 biji nanas (dalam 400 gram) jenis masam manis

  • 1 batang kayu manis

  • 5 biji buah keras

  • 3 bunga lawang

  • 5 bunga cengkih

  • 5 buah keras (ditumbuk)

  • 2 sudu besar udang kering (ditumbuk halus)

  • 5 ulas bawang putih (ditumbuk)

  • 3 biji bawang merah

  • 1 sudu besar cili kering giling

  • 1 sudu kecil halia tumbuk

  • 1 sudu besar rempah kari daging

  • 1 batang kecil daun kari

  • 1 sudu besar kerisik

  • 1/4 cawan santan

  • 2 sudu besar gula melaka

  • garam secukupnya


  • Panaskan minyak dalam belanga.
  • Tumis kayu manis, bunga lawang, bunga cengkih, buah keras, udang kering, bawang putih, bawang merah, cili kering, halia, rempah, daun kari.
  • Bila sudah pecah minyak, masukkan kepingan nanas dan masak dalam 5-7 minit atau hingga air nanas keluar.
  • Terbalikkan nanas dan renih. Kacau kadang-kadang agar bahagian dasar periuk tak hangus.
  • Masukkan air dan bahan-bahan lain. Renihkan.
  • Kuah akan pekat. Tambahkan garam jika perlu.
  • Hidangkan bersama nasi panas, ikan goreng dan sayur ulam.


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About Me

Mazmin Shariff

A mom, baker and cook, living in Malaysia, sharing the best curated tips and recipes she has in her collection just in case she lost all the recipes written in hardcopies.



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