Thursday, February 04, 2010

Gado Gado

This is another one from The Vegetarian Gourmet. It was kind of a cheat, since I've made it before, but by the time I'd discarded four other cookbooks because I didn't have the ingredients or hadn't left myself enough time, it was this or just flinging something together, and I didn't want to fall in a heap on the second day of my challenge!

Gado Gado is a very useful "bottom of the vege crisper" recipe, since you just pull out any vegetables you've got and whack peanut sauce on them. Mmm, peanut sauce... I added noodles to the suggested list of foods to serve, and cooked up enough hard boiled eggs for everyone to have one (or, in the case of the kids, two). I'll give the recipe for peanut sauce as written, because I actually followed it with only one substitution due to missing ingredients, but just tell you what veges we had instead of giving you the suggested ones. You can use whatever you want, or whatever needs to be cleared out of the fridge before you go shopping.

My nearly-5yo also had enormous fun with this recipe. She peeled veges for me, then cleared the table (because she wanted it to be "pretty" for the photographs) and assembled most of the veges on the platter by herself. She did not, however, eat the peanut sauce, which kind of made it less like gado gado than a big plate of vegies, noodles and eggs, although she didn't seem to mind this.

Vegetable Salad with Peanut Sauce (Gado Gado)


2 cloves garlic
1/2 - 1 1/2 tsp chilli powder (I used a bit less than 1/4 because I am a wimp)
1 medium onion, finely diced
225g crunchy peanut butter
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar (because I didn't have any lemon juice)
450mL water

Heat the oil in a saucepan and saute the onion until golden. Add the garlic and chilli and fry until fragrant. Add the peanuts, brown sugar, and rice wine vinegar or lemon juice and stir to combine, then gradually stir in the water. Bring it to the boil, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has thickened but remains thin enough to pour. Keep the sauce hot on a very low burner while you finish preparing the vegetables.

Vegetables platter
1 small red and 1 small green capsicum, sliced
about two cups of shredded won bok
1 tin of baby corn, or use fresh
1 medium zucchini, cut into 2 inch long sticks
1/4 cauliflower, cut into florets
1 medium sweet potato, cut into 2 inch long sticks
2 small carrots, cut into 2 inch long sticks
3 cakes of rice vermicelli
hard boiled eggs (optional)

I didn't blanch the capsicum or won bok, although Scott suggests doing so for some vegetables, because I could not be arsed. I steamed the sweet potato and carrots until almost tender, then added the cauliflower for a couple of minutes, then the zucchini for another couple of minutes.

Boil the noodles for a few minutes until cooked, then drain and put in the middle of the platter. Arrange all the vegetables in piles around the edge of the platter. Pour the sauce over the vegetables, or serve in a separate bowl. We gave everybody a hard boiled egg each, although Scott suggests using 1 egg as a garnish. Omit entirely for a fabulous vegan meal!


It was bloody marvellous. Two out of two recipes from this book have been roaring successes: I think this book is going on the "keepers" pile!

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