Belacan is a Malaysian dried shrimp paste made from small Acetes shrimp. The krill are steamed, mashed, and aged before being fried and pressed into pungent cakes. Belacan has a strong and distinctive odor with an equally potent flavor and umami content. It is an essential ingredient in Southeast Asian cuisine to flavor dishes such as nasi lemak, curry, and stir-fry dishes. Belacan powder is a form of instant belacan that is richer in umami and not as funky as belacan. It dissolves readily and can be added directly to your dishes as a seasoning.