Monday, December 20, 2010

You'll Go Nuts for This Sauce

Recently, a girlfriend and I had dinner at the home of some mutual friends. One of them is a master at Thai massage and a phenomenal cook who has an exceptional diet. Everytime I go there I'm treated to something wonderful (like his fried red rice yesterday : )

At dinner, he served us a beautiful platter with egg, fried tofu and sweet potato. Accompanying this was a nut-based satay sauce that is typically served with a very similar Indonesian dish called gado-gado, that paired really well with a beautiful display of veggies that included carrots, cabbage, snow peas, banana flowers, garlic flowers, bamboo shoots, long beans, watercress, and sprouts. It was a divine meal, enjoyed with some wonderful friends in a warm, cozy atmosphere. A perfect combination, I would say.

If you don’t have nut allergies, this sauce would round out a nice vegetarian meal with vegetables and grains and even fruit. And, if you’re having a tough time getting your kids to eat their green beans and broccoli, this is a healthy alternative to dousing them with melted cheese.

Mixed-nuts Sauce

1- 2 T grapeseed or coconut oil
2 cups mixed nuts
8 cloves garlic, chopped
4 shallots, chopped
3 fresh/frozen chilli peppers (1/2 tsp chilli powder)
1/2 tsp brown sugar
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
450 ml / 16 fl oz / 2 cups water
1 tbsp tamarind water or juice of a lemon
1 cup coconut milk

A thin slice of shrimp paste (optional)

Salt to taste

Stir-fry the mixed nuts for 4 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to drain in a colander, and leave to cool. Then pound or grind the nuts into a fine powder, using a blender, coffee grinder, or pestle and mortar.

Crush the garlic, shallots and shrimp paste in a mortar with a little salt, and saute in the remaining oil for 1 minute.

Add the chilli powder, sugar, soy sauce, water, and coconut milk. Bring this to the boil, then add the ground peanuts. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce becomes thick; this should take about 8-10 minutes.

Add the tamarind water or lemon juice and more salt if needed.

When cool, keep in a jar in the fridge. Reheat as required for use with satay or as a dip for lalab crudites or savory snacks. The sauce will keep in the fridge for up to 1 week.

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm... Sounds really delicious! Thanks a lot for sharing this yummy recipe. Really got to try this.