Great Recipe for Thai Peanut Sauce.
I love peanuts. Peanut butter. Peanut butter cookies. Roasted peanuts. Spicy peanuts. There is something about the flavor of peanuts that is very appealing to me and I am so very grateful I do not suffer from peanut allergies.
That said, I don’t eat many peanuts anymore because I mostly eat almonds. Almond butter, roasted almonds, etc. So, it is always a special treat when I decide to make peanut sauce for something like peanut noodles or Gado Gado, a traditional Indonesian vegetable salad covered in peanut sauce. Yum. That always brings me back to one of my favorite places on earth: Indonesia- the inspiration for this sauce.
So, here’s your warning: This isn’t really a quick sauce to prepare. You need to follow through with a few steps, but it is well worth the time and effort, I promise.
Step 1: Thinly slice 4 cloves of garlic and fry them with 3-5 dried Thai chilies (I always go with 5) in a couple tablespoons of peanut oil until the garlic is golden and toasted and the chilies are a little puffed.
Step 2: Remove these from the heat and oil to stop them from cooking. Let them cool on some paper towels while prepping the rest of the sauce.
In my kitchen, I have a step 3: Make peanut butter. I put 2 cups of peanuts in the Vita-Mix and make fresh peanut butter in about one minute’s time. If you don’t own a Vita-Mix yet, make sure you are using real peanut butter. Basically, that means please, please, please only use peanut butter if the the ingredients read: Peanuts. Or, Peanuts and Salt.
Step 4: In a bowl or large Pyrex measuring cup, add approximately 1 cup of peanut butter. Everything in this recipe is approximate, so you can play with the flavors and add more of something or less according to your tastes.
5 TB soy sauce
1/2 cup honey
juice from 2 lemons
juice from 1/2 lime
1/4 cup warm water (it is easier to mix with warm water rather than cold)
Mix this well.
Step 5: Grind your garlic and chilies in your mortar and pestle.
I have a special attachment to my mortar and pestle because I bought it in Indonesia.
Add the garlic and chilies to your sauce and mix well.
I made a big bowl of peanut noodles with this sauce. Too bad I didn’t double the recipe and store some in the fridge for a week or so. Next time.
Megan Bucholz is an avid home cook in beautiful Boulder, CO. She tries to buy fresh, local, seasonal ingredients whenever possible and make as many foods as possible from scratch. She prepares mostly vegetarian food and enjoys showing others how delicious foods can be. She is the CEO and founding foodie of Local Table Tours.