Gado Gado - Mixed Vegetable and Egg Salad with Peanut Sauce

The inspiration came from a book called The Exotic Kitchen of Indonesia – recipes from the Outer Islands by Copeland Marks.
It’s a wonderful read. I grabbed it one really hot day when I didn’t feel like cooking but wanted to eat something light.

This is an Indonesian dish that is served cold, very filling, and easily made ahead. What could be better for a summer supper with a glass of wine or a chilled beer!

Feel free to substitute any combination of vegetables. Add cooked chicken or other proteins if you feel like. I like it best to have 1/3 of the vegetables cooked and the rest raw.

For serving, I place the peanut sauce as a dip in the center of a large platter in a nice bowl and arrange the vegetables around like a vegetarian Nicoise Salad.

Serves 6
4-6 eggs boiled just until the yolks are set, about 6 minutes, chilled, peeled and cut into wedges
½ pound cooked potatoes
1 cup cabbage or romaine lettuce cut into wedges
½ pound carrots blanched and chilled, cut into attractive 2-bite sized pieces
½ pound bean sprouts or garden fresh green or yellow beans, blanched and chilled
1 cucumber peeled and sliced into ½” slices
½ jicama peeled and sliced
½ pound cherry tomatoes or wedges of vine ripe tomatoes
1 tub of firm tofu drained, blanched and cut into cubes
3 tablespoons crispy fried shallots or sliced scallions
several springs of fresh herbs such and basil, shisho, tarragon, cilantro, and mint

Peanut sauce
1 cup peanut butter (smooth)
1 cup coconut milk
2 serrano chilies, seeded and minced, or 1 jalapeno chili, seeded and minced
3 tablespoons palm sugar or 3 tablespoons white sugar
½ cup rice vinegar
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
2-inch piece of ginger root, peeled and finely grated
¼ cup regular or sweet soy sauce

Mix all ingredients well in a blender or food processor. Peanut sauce is also good with poultry or pork.

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