Quick and Easy Salad Favorites  Mixed Vegetable Salad with Peanut Sauce

Quick and Easy Salad Favorites
Mixed Vegetable Salad with Peanut Sauce

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Recipe from Stephen Ceideburg

  1. Salad:
    • 1 pkg firm (Chinese-style) tofu
    • 1 tsp kecap manis
    • oil, for deep frying
    • 6 cups vegetables (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

  2. Garnish:
    • Hard-cooked eggs
    • Fried Onion Flakes [I fry dehydrated onion flakes in a little oil till they're golden brown with excellent results. S.C.]

  3. Gado-Gado Sauce:
    • 1 tblsp minced garlic
    • 2 tblsp minced shallot
    • 1 tblsp minced fresh galangal or 1 teaspoon ground
    • 1 tsp dried shrimp paste
    • 1/2 tsp ground dried chile or 1/4 teaspoon sambal ulek
    • 1 cup oil
    • 1/2 cup raw peanuts
    • 1 tsp brown or palm sugar
    • 1 cup thin coconut milk [The thin stuff from the bottom of a can of coconut milk. S.C.]
    • Salt to taste
    • Juice of 1/2 lime, to taste
  • 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 30 minutes, unwrap, and discard liquid.

  • Cut tofu into bite-sized squares or triangles and sprinkle with kecap manis.
  • Fry in 350°F oil until golden brown and puffy; transfer to paper towels to drain.
  • Reserve oil to cook peanuts.

  • 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.

  • 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.
To prepare Gado-Gado Sauce:
  • 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.

  • 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.)
  • 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 come to room temperature before serving.


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