Saturday, August 17, 2019

Farmer's Market Gado Gado Salad, Indonesian Style

Indonesian Meets Farmer's Market Gado-Gado Salad
This is SUMMER SALAD time and Gado Gado is a great meal salad.  With protein like hard boiled eggs or tofu and peanuts in the dressing it makes a prefect lunch or light dinner. For a vegan variation see the notes below. 

   Gado Gado in Javanese means "Mixed Vegetables with the peanut sauce". lends itself to many variations. Use what you find at the summer markets. The basic calls for a bed of shredded Napa cabbage, raw or steamed green or long beans, peanuts, sprouts, and peanut dressing 
    Be creative. Tomatoes, kohlrabi, carrots, cucumbers, zucchini, onions.. Humble vegetables are delish in summer and watery veggies are best for staying hydrated!. 

  In a large bowl bed your shredded cabbage and then arrange the vegetables and tofu or  eggs decoratively or messy. Whatever turns you on.

  Blanched and chilled green beans
  Cooked and cooled potatoes, diced
  Mung bean sprouts
  Cut Radishes
  Grated carrots
  Cut scallions
  Cut cucumbers
  Cubes of firm salted tofu* or hard boiled eggs, peeled and quartered
  And whatever else turns you on
  Garnish with chopped peanuts and if you you want to be hardcore authentic, store bought shrimp crackers. They aren't vital, but they will thrill any of your friends who happen to be Indonesian! 

Balinese Comfort junk food


   A good blender makes this dressing smooth as silk. 
   1 1/2 cup roasted unsalted peanuts 
   2 tsp Indonesian shrimp paste or a vegan alternative ( see the notes)
        1/4 cup palm or dark brown sugar
   2 cloves garlic, peeled
   1 small hot chile, chopped
          8 oz coconut milk
   1/4 cup palm or rice vinegar
   the juice of one juicy lime
    salt, to taste
    Puree in food processor until smooth.

    Drizzle on each salad or pass the dressing on the side. 

    To make salted tofu, simply cut the tofu into 1 inch by 1 inch squares, about 1/4 to 1/2 in thick.
    Sprinkle kosher salt on a cookie sheet and lay the squares of tofu evenly on it. Then sprinkle the top with a little more salt. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for about and hour.          Carefully rinse well and they are ready to use. 

To make this vegan just substitute something fermented for the shrimp paste. 
Shrimp paste is the REAL DEAL flavor, but a little kimchi juice or fermented tofu 
will give you the essential funk you need as well. 
This fermented tofu stuff is FUNKY! Like vegan bleu cheese --  I love it!

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