Indonesian Peanut Sauce (Satay Sauce)
A popular sauce from south east Asia that can be served with many vegan dishes.
Vegan. Hands-on time: 20 mins. Total time: 30 mins.
Contributed by (May 2011).
This piquant sauce is an essential part of south east Asian cuisine, where it's found in such dishes as satay and gado-gado. It's also very popular in the Netherlands. As well as being common in that country's thousands of Indonesian restaurants, it's often served in snack bars with frites and similar fast foods.
You can buy ready-made peanut sauce in supermarkets and Asian shops, but vegetarians beware: commercial varieties often contain shrimp paste.
The sauce is also easy to make at home. An authentic recipe would use ground roasted peanuts, but you can get perfectly good results with less effort by using peanut butter instead, as I have done here.
- 1 cup (6 oz, 175 g) peanut butter (crunchy or smooth)
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 small piece of root ginger, peeled and chopped
- 1 tsp. curry powder or garam masala
- 1 tbsp. brown sugar
- 1 tsp. soy sauce
- 4 cups (32 fl oz, 960 ml) unsweetened coconut milk
- 2 tbsp. lime or lemon juice
Put all the ingredients except the coconut milk and lime or lemon juice in a food processor or blender. Blend to a smooth paste.
Transfer the mixture to a saucepan. Place over a low heat.
Slowly stir in the coconut milk. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for about 20 minutes, stirring frequently. The mixture will be quite thin at first, but will gradually thicken.
Remove the pan from the heat. Cool slightly, then stir in the lime or lemon juice. Serve warm or cold.
Note on quantities and temperatures:
Quantities are given in American (cups), imperial (oz, fl oz) and metric (g, ml) units. Do not mix the units - use one or other system throughout the recipe.
See also How much does a cup weigh?
oz = ounces, fl oz = fluid ounces, g = grams, ml = milliliters, tsp = teaspoons, tbsp = tablespoons.
Oven temperatures are given in degrees F (Fahrenheit) and C (Celsius).
For fan-assisted ovens, reduce the temperature by 20F or 10C.