Photos by Emily Caruso
One of my favorite things to do when I’m playing around in the kitchen is to recreate dishes that I’ve had while dining out at restaurants. Restaurants featuring world cuisine are among my favorite places when I’m seeking out new dishes for my kitchen experiments, and the more unusual and exotic, the better. Surprisingly, some of the most seemingly exotic and unusual dishes are some of the simplest. That would be the case for both the satay and peanut sauce components of this recipe.
It was a long time ago that I first tried tempeh satay with peanut sauce, but I distinctly remember thinking it was so amazing and flavorful I’d never be able to recreate it on my own. The name “satay” even sounds crazy and exotic, like it couldn’t possibly mean something as simple as food on a stick.
Food on a stick is exactly what it is though! Okay, food soaked in a super flavorful marinade, then stuck on a stick and cooked, but still pretty simple if you ask me. It’s the marinade that makes it taste out of this world, and even that involves little more than throwing a bunch of ingredients into your food processor. Lemongrass, ginger, shallots and garlic all contribute to the super flavor punch that this satay packs, and happily, these are all ingredients you can get at most supermarkets. Lemongrass is probably the most unusual of the ingredients, but you should be able to find some stalks stashed away in the produce section of most stores, and if not, check the ethnic foods aisle for jarred lemongrass or the spice aisle for dried.
Oh, then there’s the peanut sauce component of this recipe, which is made from all ingredients that are pretty much guaranteed to be in the supermarket, if not already in your pantry.
Traditional satay is cooked on a grill, but since we’re still in April, that may or may not be an option, depending on the weather where you live. If you find yourself wanting to make these on a nice and toasty day, feel free to bust out the outdoor grill. If not, stick with an indoor grill or your oven. Whichever option you take, they’ll be delicious.
For the Tempeh Satay:
For the Peanut Dipping Sauce:
To Make the Tempeh Satay:
To Make the Peanut Dipping Sauce:
The tempeh satay can also be cooked on an indoor or outdoor grill. Oil the grill lightly and cook over medium-high heat for 8-10 minutes, until lightly charred, flipping halfway through.
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