Mixed vegetable salad with peanut sauce (gado-gado)

Yield: 1 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 \N Package firm (Chinese-style) tofu
1 teaspoon Kecap manis
\N \N Oil, for deep frying
6 cups Vegetables *
1 tablespoon Minced garlic
2 tablespoons Minced shallot
1 tablespoon Minced fresh galangal or
1 teaspoon Ground galangal
1 teaspoon Dried shrimp paste
½ teaspoon Ground dried chile or
¼ teaspoon Sambal ulek
\N \N Hard-cooked eggs, for garnish
\N \N Fried Onion Flakes for garnish
1 cup Oil
½ cup Raw peanuts
1 teaspoon Brown or palm sugar
1 cup Thin coconut milk **
\N \N Salt, to taste
\N \N Juice of 1/2 lime, to taste


* (a variety of the following): cabbage, in 1-inch squares; bean sprouts; carrots, sliced or julienned; green beans, in 2-inch pieces; potatoes or sweet potatoes in large dice; sliced cucumbers; watercress sprigs; tomato wedges.

** (The thin stuff from the bottom of a can of coconut milk. SC) This is from a new cookbook I just got. Haven't tried this recipe yet, but it looks dead on.

This is a rather free-form salad of lightly cooked vegetables; the exact contents depend on what is available. What makes it gado-gado is the dressing, a creamy peanut sauce.

1. Remove tofu from package and drain. Place on a plate lined with cloth or paper towels, top with another layer of towel and an inverted plate, and place a weight of a pound or more on top. Let stand for 30 minutes, unwrap, and discard liquid. Cut tofu into bite-sized squares or triangles and sprinkle with kecap manis. Fry in 350F oil until golden brown and puffy; transfer to paper towels to drain. Reserve oil to cook peanuts.

2. One at a time, blanch vegetables in lightly salted water, rinsing them in cold water to stop cooking as soon as they reach the desired degree of doneness. Cabbage and bean sprouts require only a few seconds; carrots, green beans, and potatoes may take several minutes depending on size and tenderness. Do not blanch cucumbers, watercress, and tomatoes. use them raw.

3. Place Gado-Gado Sauce in a small bowl in the center of a large platter. Arrange vegetables on platter around sauce. Garnish with wedges or slices of hard-cooked egg and fried onion flakes. To serve, spoon some sauce onto each plate and dip vegetables into sauce. Serves 4 to 6 with other dishes.


1. To prepare sauce in a mortar: Pound garlic, shallot, galangal, shrimp paste, and chile to a paste. To prepare sauce in a blender: Chop together in a 1-cup jar.

2. In a wok or deep skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until a peanut sizzles on contact. Fry peanuts until lightly browned; transfer to paper towels to drain. When peanuts have cooled, grind in a mortar or food processor to a coarse, grainy paste, adding a little oil if necessary to facilitate blending. (May be made up to a week ahead and stored covered in refrigerator.) 3. Remove all but 2 tablespoons oil from pan and reserve for another use. Return pan to medium-low heat and add pounded mixture. Cook until quite fragrant, but do not burn. Add peanuts, sugar, and coconut milk and bring to a boil, stirring. Simmer until thick and season to taste with salt and lime juice. Allow to coot to room temperature before serving.

Makes 1 cup.

From the California Culinary Academy's "Southeast Asian Cooking", Jay Harlow, published by the Chevron Chemical Company, 1987. ISBN 0-89721-098-0.

Posted by Stephen Ceideberg; May 31 1993.

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