The last 2 weeks have been incredibly wet. Rain every day, flash flood warnings every two, and thunderstorms every three. Taking pictures with natural light have been a true challenge and going to the garden has just been out of the question. But I really really wanted to make Satay for the Indonesian week of the Foodie’s Wanderlust Adventure.
Finally we had a two day break from all the rain so I got the Pork marinating. Next day I ran to my neighbours to borrow their mini BBQ and took advantage of the few hours of sunny weather we had left. It started raining again that night. It was a close call, but it paid well with a wonderfully tasting Pork Satay with a delicious Peanut Sauce.
I’ve got to say, it is not the easiest of recipes. Not because it’s complicated, but because it involves many ingredients a more than a few steps. And that goes both for the Satay marinade and the Peanut Sauce as well. But for a person who loves cooking and has no problem spending a little extra time in the kitchen to create something tasty, that’s not a problem at all.
That said, this is the perfect dish to do ahead for a BBQ party. It’s beyond delicious, juicy, packed with flavor and a definitive crowd pleaser. For the Satay, you need to prepare a marinade and leave the pork (or chicken) resting on it overnight so that it soaks up the flavour. The Peanut Sauce I’d say is a MUST for this dish.
You cannot do this Satay recipe and not make this wonderful Peanut Sauce. It’s like butter and bread, you gotta have them together. This one takes a few more steps than the marinade, but it’s definitely worth the time. This time I went for the easy route by using a blender instead of the old fashioned mortar and pestle just to save some time and effort.
Good thing I made plenty of it. My neighbors got a nice share of the Satay for lending me the BBQ. But next time I’ll double the amount. It’s a fantastic dish!
- About 10 bamboo skewers
- 1 1/2 lb pork meat, in chunks (or chicken thighs)
- 2 inches galangal or ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 3 shallots, peeled, thinly chopped
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1/2 tbsp black peppercorns
- 2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp peanut oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1/4 cup sweet soy sauce
- 1/4 cup peanut oil
- 5 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled
- 3 red chillies, seeded and roughly chopped
- 2 inches fresh galangal or ginger
- 2 tbsp coriander seeds
- 2 cloves
- 5 cardamom pods
- 1/8 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 3/4 cup peanuts, hulled
- 2 oz palm sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1 1/2 tbsp tamarind paste
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup hot water
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 5 kaffir lime leaves
- 1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, crushed
- Salt to taste
- Place the bamboo skewers in enough water to cover them. They'll float, that's ok. Place them on the fridge overnight. This will prevent them from burning on the BBQ.
- Place all the marinade ingredients in a ziploc bag along with the meat. Combine well and place on the fridge overnight to marinate.
- To make the Peanut Sauce, heat the peanut oil in a wok or saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the shallots, garlic cloves, chillies, galangal, coriander seeds, cloves, cardamom pods, fennel seeds and peanuts. Fry until the garlic gets golden brown, not burned.
- Place all ingredients on a blender along with the palm sugar, tamarind paste, coconut milk, hot water, nutmeg and cinnamon. Blend to form a paste. It's nice for there to be some grains of peanuts left for texture.
- Heat the reserved oil over medium low heat on the wok and carefully pour the paste on it. Reduce it, stirring occasionally with a rubber spatula until it gets a nice and thick consistency. At this point, season with salt.
- Take the pork out of the fridge and put three to four pieces of meat on the end of each skewer.
- Cook them on the BBQ or the grill as close to the fire as possible. You want some of the corners charred for a nice smoky flavor. Baste the meat half-way through with the marinating liquid, but make sure you cook it through. Pierce one of the meat pieces with a knife to make sure is completely cooked.
- Serve the Satay hot, with salad, steamed rice and the Peanut Sauce.