Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce

I've never made a peanut sauce before.

I've always liked them though.

Asian cuisine does the whole 'nut'-based sauce thing really well I think.

Anyway... as with any thing I'm going to attempt for the first time, I did a lot of research.

I found some pretty cool recipes, some pretty trashy recipes, and a bunch in-between.

And, as always, after reading up on as many recipes as I can, I'll invariably take bits and pieces from all over to make my own.

For the most part, however, this one was very similar to a (quite simple) recipe of Michael Smith's.

I want to live in Michael Smith's world. It's so serene. And I'd get access to one of the most awesome spice pantries I've ever seen. You know it's awesome when he in fact calls it a spice library.  :)

Of all the celebrity chef's kitchens I've ever seen, his is just plain... cooool. Sometimes I take the guided tour on his site and just stare at the photos for minutes.


I realize I just got really off track there... sorry about that.

So, this is very similar to that recipe, but ultimately different.

First, I can't see myself needing like 3 cups of peanut sauce... for anything. I cut it in half and still got close to two cups of sauce... most of which is going in my fridge to (hopefully) be used up on other things soon.

Now, if you're like me, when you think peanut sauce, you're going to think of various grilled meats. Namely chicken. I think they complement each other very well. But, I also plan on using this on other things... such as steamed or pan-fried vegetables and the like.

So, I'm happy to have extra sauce left-over in the fridge.

First, we did a cup of peanut butter. I have a jar of unpasteurized uber-plain PB that I keep in the fridge for cooking. It quite literally is, as the name suggests, Just Peanuts.  It tastes like a mouthful of unsalted peanuts. As it should. :)

Scrape a cup of that into a blender or mixer.

Next, I did a quarter of a cup each of soy sauce and brown sugar, and stirred that up a touch.

This is, after all, a spicy peanut sauce, so next we come up with some heat.  I've been collecting my own dried chili seeds for the last little while, so I had some nice hot ones on hand.

So, in go about two teaspoons of those.

Next comes a couple of lemons.  I only used two, but they were fairly large, and I used every scrap of juice and zest from them.

Then its just some good herbalicious addition.  There are several green herbs which I think could work well here.  Michael Smith suggests mint which would be delicious, but I went with Parsley, because that's what I had.  Other things which I think might also work here are lemongrass, and cilantro (which - funnily enough - is also known as Chinese Parsley!)

So, in goes a good handful of loosely-chopped parsley.

After that it's just mix/blend/puree to your heart's content.


Peanut-y. Salty. And... Spicy!

Like I thought - I ended up with a fair bit, which I imagine will keep for at least a couple weeks in the fridge?? It's just peanuts, lemon, and parsley for the most part... it should last a little while...

It just means I'm going to have some delicious spicy Thai peanut-based dishes in the next couple of weeks!

Which is just fine.