by Daisy

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Gado-gado is an Indonesian dish of vegetables covered with a seasoned peanut sauce.   It’s very versatile because you can use whatever fresh vegetables you have on hand, although cabbage, particularly nappa cabbage, bean sprouts, green beans, bitter melon (seeds removed) and corn are traditional.  You can vary the spiciness of the dish by adding hot peppers to the vegetables or a bit of your favorite “heat” to the peanut sauce, such as cayenne pepper, hot pepper flakes, tobasco, or other hot sauce.  This is a hearty vegetarian specialty.  I’ve brought this to more than one ravenous postpartum mother and it always gets rave reviews.


serves 4

1 lb. firm or extra-firm tofu

2 tsp. soy sauce

1 tsp. ground coriander

6-8 cups sliced assorted fresh vegetables (onion, cabbage, peppers, bean sprouts, celery, green onion, etc.)

2 T. olive oil

4 cups cooked brown rice

Peanut Sauce (recipe below)

sesame seeds for garnish, optional

Slice and fry tofu according to these instructions up to the point you add the seasonings–you’re going to season this differently:  Toss the fried tofu cubes in the 2 tsp. soy sauce and the ground coriander.  Set aside.

Chop vegetables into bite-sized pieces.

I included bitter melon in my veg mix and thought I’d show you what a bitter melon looks like when you open it up.

. . . and slice it:

Saute the vegetables together in a large skillet in the 2 T. olive oil until crisp-tender.

To serve, place a base of rice on the serving dish or divide between individual plates to serve restaurant-style.  Add vegetables and tofu and top with peanut sauce.  Garnish with sesame seeds.

Peanut Sauce:

1 cup peanut butter

1 tablespoon vinegar

2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice

1/2 tsp garlic powder or 1 tsp minced fresh garlic

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, or hot sauce to taste(optional)

3/4 to 1 cup water

Combine all ingredients up to the water in a medium bowl.  Add water in increments until it is incorporated.  It will seize up a little on you as the water cools the peanut oil.  Don’t worry, as you add more water and blend it will calm down.  Add additional water as needed until it reaches a pourable, saucy consistency.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Viola August 24, 2011 at 1:14 am

Mmm, this looks tasty! I’ll have to try out this recipe soon!

xx Viola

Homes and Home August 24, 2011 at 7:44 am

All those fabulous colors in one dish…looks so inviting. Not to mention, you make simple cut veg look like art!

Sarah @ Kitchen Procrasatination August 25, 2011 at 6:27 pm

This looks so good! Our garden is producing more eggplants than we know what to do with at the moment. I bet they would be good in this recipe along with some onions and peppers.

Kris B. September 3, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I love, love, love the idea of cooking meals for ravenous post-partum moms, but peanut recipes should be reserved for those moms planning on bottle-feeding. If you are cooking for a new mom who is breast-feeding, stay away from peanut recipes. You never know if the new baby is allergic to nuts. It happened to me. Scary. My favorite postpartum recipe? Chicken soup! Hydrating, filling and comforting.

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