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Gado Gado (Indonesian Salad with Spicy Peanut Sauce)

I used to dislike Sundays. It is a day away from Mondays which means I have to wake up early the next day for work. Don't get me wrong. I enjoy work but I love my bed more. Besides that, I find the air on Sunday stale and the weather too sunny for my liking. I prefer days that are cool, shady and breezy. Well...that's was my impression of Sundays. Nowadays my Sundays are different. It is fun! I have family lunch parties. It could be Soya sauce Chicken Noodles treat or a home-made pizza party. This time round, we are having Gado Gado buffet.

Gado Gado originates from Indonesia. It is made up of boiled vegetables dressed with spicy peanut sauce. It is actually up to individual to decide what goes into the salad. I like it with rice cakes (lontong) and this makes the meal more satisfying. The school I used to go during my primary school days sold this simple and gorgeous dish. I did not eat it often because it would cost my entire day worth of pocket money to have it. Then I was given a humble amount for pocket money.

If you feel like having Gado Gado now, it is not easily found in the hawker stalls, I am not too sure why... Do you know?

In case if you are wondering ... I assure you it is not a 'Tupperware' party. I wanted to use these containers so that the leftovers can be easily kept away. But guess what... there was no leftovers. Everything was gone! :)

Recipe (Serves 6)


A) Spicy Peanut Sauce

Spice Paste (Make approx. 3 portions of rempah)

  • 200g Shallots

  • 90g Lemon Grass

  • 80g Galangal

  • 30g Garlic

  • 40g Ginger

  • 4g Tumeric Powder

  • 10g Belachan powder

  • 50g Buah Keras (Candle nuts)

Using a electric blender, blend all above ingredients into paste form to make rempah. Set aside for use later.

  • 80g Rempah

  • 2 cloves of Garlic, chopped

  • tsp Cumin Powder

  • 1 tsp Coriander Powder

  • 50g Chili Paste

  • 3 tbsp Tamarind paste, mix with 1 cup of water

  • 100g Ground Peanuts

  • 400ml Water

  • 50ml Coconut milk

  • 1 tsp Salt

  • 60g Gula Malacca

  • 1/2 cup of cooking oil


  1. In a wok over medium heat, add oil and fry rempah and chili paste for a minute and add in garlic, cumin and coriander powder.

  2. When the spice paste separates from the oil (this will take approx 8 minutes), add tamarind water, water and coconut milk. Bring to boil and add in grounded peanuts.

  3. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes over low heat. When in thickens, add sugar and salt.

  4. You may vary the tamarind water for preferred acidity, salt and sugar to taste.

  5. Keep gravy warm.

B) Salad

You may prepare the salad ingredients while the gravy is boiling.

  • 5 eggs, boiled, peeled and quartered

  • 2 Potatoes, peeled, boiled and cut into cubes

  • 1 Cucumber, removed seeds and cut into 1 inch strips

  • 2 cups of Beansprouts, blanched

  • 2 pieces of Beancurds (Tau Kwa), deep fried and cut into cubes

  • 300g Cabbage, cut into 1 inch cubes and blanched

  • 15 French Beans, cut into 1 inch strips and blanched

  • 5 Boiled rice cakes

  • Crackers

To enjoy, mix and match the ingredients and drizzle generously with the spicy peanut sauce.

How are your Sundays spent?

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