Monday 30 November 2009

Meat-Free Monday: Gado Gado

Gado Gado is an Indonesian salad that combines raw and cooked vegetables, tofu and peanut sauce. It is seriously delicious and very hearty.

My version is not at all authentic. It was a cold night in the UK so I made the vegetables more seasonal and served it all a bit warmer than you'd usually have it.

Gado Gado (serves 2, abundantly)


1 bag bean shoots
half a peeled cucumber
half a shredded red cabbage
1 onion, sliced
2 carrots, cut into batons
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into batons
Fried tofu cubes (I used about 6 each because we like them)
1 hard boiled egg, peeled and cut into quarters (optional - obviously leave it out if you are serving a vegan)

Peanut Sauce

1tsp oil
125g crunchy peanut butter (please god choose a no sugar, no hydrogenated vegetable oil one - the ingredients should just be peanuts and maybe salt)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
chillies (this is between you and your palate - I used 1 very hot serrano chilli to give it some serious oomph)
water (200ml or thereabouts)
1tbs dark brown sugar or palm sugar
1 small can coconut cream
1/2 tsp grated ginger
2 dried kaffir lime leaves
1 tsp tamarind paste
1tbs soy sauce
Juice of a lime

Start by putting the sweet potato pieces in a roasting tin with a little oil, and baking it at 180C until soft and starting to brown.

Then make the sauce - in a medium-sized saucepan, heat the oil and add the garlic and shallots. When they are translucent add the chilli and peanut butter. When the peanut butter melts (stir it constantly, it is likely to catch) add the sugar, coconut cream, ginger, lime leaves, tamarind and soy sauce. Bring to the boil, and add enough water to loosen it to a good consistency. Bring to the boil again and add the juice of a lime. Remove from the heat.

When the sweet potato is just about done, do the other veg. Blanch the bean shoots and cucumber, drain well and divide between 2 large bowls. In a wok or saute pan, stir fry the cabbage, onion, carrot and tofu until the vegetables are tender but still slightly crunchy. Place a layer of the stirfried vegetables over the bean shoots and cucumber. Top this with slices of the roast sweet potato.

Pour a generous amount of the still-warm peanut sauce over the vegetables and garnish with the hard-boiled egg quarters. If you aren't using them, some shreds of crisp deep-fried shallots would be good instead. Or as well.

Any left-over sauce is really delicious cold as a dip.


George Gaston said...

I love the variety of flavors & textures in this wonderful dish! many thanks for sharing it.

kat said...

I really like peanut sauce so I bet this is fabulous

Alicia Foodycat said...

George - it really is wonderful, you should give it a go!

Kat - you would love it! Although probably with less chilli than we put in.

Bettina Douglas said...

I love gado gado

mscrankypants said...

I adore gado gado as a summer dinner but hadn't considered a warm salad and warm sauce -- yummo. It's a good fridge clean-out dish as well to use the vege odds'n'sods.

Deb in Hawaii said...

I love gado gado but have not tried making it myself. I have a couple recipes for it tucked away somewhere, I am going to have to drag them out or try this one--it looks delicious!

Alicia Foodycat said...

Mother - I know you do! The one The Asias in Lindfield did was my first introduction.

Cranky - it is excellent for emptying the fridge.

Deb - have a go, it's such a good way to eat a massive quantity of vegetables.

NKP said...

I always wondered what Gado Gado was, sounds wonderful!

hungryandfrozen said...

That sauce sounds wonderful! I love gado gado - there's a takeaway shop down the road that does a lovely version but looking at this recipe I want to try and make it myself now!

Alicia Foodycat said...

Natashya - you really must try it!

Laura - you are so lucky to have a takeaway that does it!

Anonymous said...

WOW! This is one tasty dish. I love peanut sauce, it is quite addictive actually, but perfect for a cold winter night.

Taste of Beirut said...

I welcome this recipe! I have some tofu in the fridge and no inspiration. You just gave me some!

Beatrice said...

I *love* gado gado, especially in the winter (the various colored vegetables are a nice change from my standard winter fare). I've never tried lime leaves or tamarind in my peanut sauce though -- it sounds good, though.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Johanna - totally addictive!

Taste of Beirut - I hope you loved it.

Beatrice - first time I had added them to peanut sauce too. But really good additions!


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