Not your average satay peanut sauce here – this incredibly flavourful sauce is made by roasting and crushing our own peanuts (read: not using peanut butter) and cooking down shallots and spices.

You’re probably asking, “Why would you bother with the extra ingredients and steps?” “Why not?” I say! The extra ingredients and steps it gives the sauce a bit more dimension and flavour which will make it incredibly flavourful (and tasty!) It won’t taste like a peanut butter sauce that’s missing that something something. Really!

 

Satay Peanut Sauce

 

But what if I’m feeling lazy today?

Okay fine, I know there are days when you can’t be bothered. Hey I get it! Lazy days right? Believe me, I have a lot of those days too! For those lazy days you can substitute roasting and crushing your own peanuts for peanut butter but only use natural unsweetened peanut butter. You know the one where the oil separates from the nutty stuff? Yea, that stuff. You won’t be able to shortcut anymore than that since the extra spices and ingredients really make the sauce. 😛

 

 

Bonus : Multi-purpose sauce!

This sauce is not just for Satays! Drizzle some on some cold noodles with veggies! or just freeze it in an ice cube tray to use another day. Re-heat it in a low heat pan.

 

INGREDIENTS

Most of these ingredients can be found at an Asian grocery store.

 

Satay Peanut Sauce

 

Most tamarind paste I find around here is actually tamarind pulp. If you notice large chunky bits in your tamarind paste you will need to add some water to reconstitute it and strain out the seeds and skin. If you find smooth tamerind paste then you’re gold.

 

Although galangal and ginger come from the same family they taste quite different. Ginger has a much stronger flavour so do not subtitute 1:1. You can either omit the galangal if you can’t find it or just use 1 small slice of ginger.

 

I took a shortcut (gasp! another shortcut? :)) with this recipe and instead of using hot peppers and reconstituting it with water to make it spicy, I used Sambel Olek hot sauce, which is essentially hot peppers, salt and vinegar!

 

Palm sugar may be a tricky thing to find but can be found at Asian grocery stores. If you must substitute it, just remember that palm sugar isn’t as sweet as conventional sugars and it also provides a creaminess as well. I would substitute it with half the amount of condensed milk or half the amount of brown sugar. (With all substitution, it’s usually not a perfect 1:1 so add in the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time until you achieve that perfect sweetness you’re aiming for.)

 

Let’s talk about the peanuts since it’s the star of this recipe.

If there is one thing I would change, I would not buy skinned peanuts. Unless you enjoy spending an hour peeling peanuts. 😛

 

I’m all for using whole ingredients but go for the peanuts with no skin with this recipe. You have better things to do than to peel peanuts. I do however highly recommend roasting them on the stove yourself. Even though you can buy pre-roasted peanuts, you don’t know how long it’s been siting on the shelves for and the longer it sits on the shelves they less roasted they taste. So revive them with a quick roast! 🙂

 

Satay Peanut Sauce

 

 

PUTTING IT TOGETHER

  1. Assuming you bought peanuts without the skin, throw them in a frying pan and give them a quick roast until they are nice and brown.
  2. Once they are nice and brown, let them cool a bit. Then in a mortar and pestle crush the peanuts up finely. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can either quick pulse it in a food processor or hand chop it finely.
  3. Reserve 1-2 tablespoons of finely crushed peanuts as a garnish.
  4. If you bought tamarind pulp (instead of paste) soak the tamarind pulp in a few tablespoons of water for a few minutes and then strain out the seeds and skins.
  5. Chop up the galangal, garlic, lemongrass and shallots and put it into a food processor and blitz it to it is almost a paste. If you don’t have a food processor you can chop them by hand but chop them up finely. The finer the chop the less chunks in the sauce.
  6. In a pan, add some oil onto medium heat and brown the lemongrass, shallot, garlic galangal mixture.
  7. Then add in the sambal olek (or hot sauce of your choice) and continue to cook it in the pan for a few minutes.
  8. Turn down the stove to Low heat and add in the coconut water, fish sauce, lime juice, and water and stir until combined.
  9. Add in the palm sugar and peanuts and continue to cook for 10-15 minutes
  10. If you find the sauce too thick, add some more water to thin it out.
  11. Taste it. Is it salty, sweet or sour enough for you? Everyone has a different preference on how they enjoy peanut sauce. 🙂 Adjust accordingly.
    1. Add fish sauce to make it more savoury
    2. Add condensed milk/or brown sugar to make it more sweet
    3. Add some more lime to give it a bit more tang
    4. Add hot sauce for more heat 🙂

 

Tip #1: Do you prefer smoother peanut sauces? Just add the completed sauce into a blender and blitz it!

 

Satay Peanut Sauce

 

I scream, you scream, we all scream for – satay peanut sauce? 😛

5 from 3 votes
Print
Satay Peanut Sauce
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 

An incredibly flavourful satay peanut sauce made by roasting and crushing our own peanuts and cooking down shallots and spices.

Course: Condiments, Sauce
Cuisine: Thai
Servings: 4 cups
Author: Pups with Chopsticks
Ingredients
  • 1 cup peanuts
  • 1 stalk lemongrass (approx 1/4 cup)
  • 3x3cm galangal (see notes)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 shallots
  • 1/4 cup sambel olek
  • 2 tsp tamarind paste
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup palm sugar
  • 3/4 cup water (add more to thin out sauce)
  • 2-3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 lime (juiced)
Garnish
  • peanuts (roasted and finely crushed)
Instructions
Roast the Peanuts
  1. Assuming you bought peanuts without the skin, throw them in a frying pan and give them a quick roast until they are nice and brown.

  2. Once they are nice and brown, let them cool a bit. Then in a mortar and pestle crush the peanuts up finely. If you don’t have a mortar and pestle, you can either quick pulse it in a food processor or hand chop it finely.

  3. Reserve 1-2 tablespoons of the finely crushed peanuts as a garnish.

Making the Sauce
  1. If you bought tamarind pulp (instead of paste) soak the tamarind pulp in a few tablespoons of water for a few minutes and then strain out the seeds and skins.

  2. Chop up the galangal, garlic, lemongrass and shallots and put it into a food processor and blitz it to it is almost a paste. If you don’t have a food processor you can chop them by hand but chop them up finely. The finer the chop the less chunks in the sauce.

  3. In a pan, add some oil onto medium heat and brown the lemongrass, shallot, garlic galangal mixture.

  4. Then add in the sambal olek (or hot sauce of your choice) and continue to cook it in the pan for a few minutes.

  5. Turn down the stove to Low heat and add in the coconut water, fish sauce, lime juice, and water and stir until combined.

  6. Add in the palm sugar and peanuts and continue to cook for 10-15 minutes

  7. If you find the sauce too thick, add some more water to thin it out.

  8. Taste it. Is it salty, sweet or sour enough for you? Everyone has a different preference on how they enjoy peanut sauce. 🙂 Adjust accordingly.
Recipe Notes
  • Although galangal and ginger come from the same family they taste quite different. Ginger has a much stronger flavour so do not substitute 1:1. You can either omit the galangal if you can't find it or just use 1 small slice of ginger
  • Everyone's preference is always different when it comes to peanut sauce. Tweak it until it's perfect for you. To make it more sour, use some lime juice. To make it more sweet, use some condensed milk. To make it more savoury, add some more fish sauce.
  • Smooth or Chunky? This one is a hearty chunk sauce with peanut bits but if you enjoy a smoother sauce you can just throw it in the food processor and blitz it! 🙂
Satay Peanut Sauce

 

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13 thoughts on “Satay Peanut Sauce”

  1. You have no idea how much I love peanut sauce. Spring rolls are my favorite food just bc they come with peanut sauce. I almost always have some store bought in my fridge for quick lunches but I am so trying this homemade one. It looks delicious!

    1. At first I’ll be honest, I wasn’t sure. Then after I tried it I don’t think I could ever go back! 🙂 It’s definitely worth it and it’s not much more work! Cool thing is you can freeze it too if you can’t finish it.

  2. A very interesting recipe with some unusual ingredients. You have tempted me enough to try it in my kitchen. 🙂 Lovely pics as well. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

    1. It’s easier than it looks! 🙂 Just don’t buy skinned or shelled peanuts. >_< That was a nightmare.

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