Satay peanut sauce recipe
September 14, 2012 2:43 PM   Subscribe

Searching for a half-remembered peanut sauce recipe. If that fails: your favourite amazing and simple satay peanut sauce.

The recipe I am looking for starts with blending a raw onion with oil and spices (and water?) into a slurry. Add peanuts or peanut butter (can't remember) at some point, cook on the stove until the onion is tamed and it's all tasty. Anyone have a recipe somewhat like this? Alternatively, an awesome satay peanut sauce recipe which does not have thirty-five ingredients and take all day to cook.
posted by arcticwoman to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know the recipe you're looking for, but my super-simple peanut sauce involves:

1 can coconut milk
1.5 cups peanut putter
2 - 3 tbsp lime juice

Cook on stovetop until well blended. It takes about 5 - 10 minutes. You can add soy sauce, fish sauce, and other such things to suit your tastes, but the most basic version is just those three ingredients.

You can also play around with the exact amount of peanut butter if you like it thicker or thinner.
posted by asnider at 2:50 PM on September 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

I've success with this no-cook sauce. The citrus stays very bright. I also add chunky peanut butter instead of smooth as that it what we have in the house.
posted by Foam Pants at 2:54 PM on September 14, 2012

I usually just combine (natural) chunky peanut butter (I like the crunch!), Sriracha, lime juice and zest, Soy and/or fish sauce to taste. Warming it (either in the micro, or on the stovetop) helps things mix more easily, but it's not strictly necessary.

mmmmm.... now I want chicken satay! With cucumber slices!
posted by mon-ma-tron at 2:57 PM on September 14, 2012

My favourite is one I've slowly morphed over time from various recipes I've found.

Being vegan, I eat fresh spring rolls a *lot*, and this peanut sauce is awesome.

small piece of lemongrass, chopped (if you don't have this, just use a splash of lemon juice)
Freshly grated ginger-to taste (powdered ginger works as well)
1 c water
½ c hoisin sauce
3 TBSP peanut butter
dab of chili sauce to taste

Simmer lemongrass in the water for 5 minutes.
Strain out the lemongrass and add the remaining ingredients to the water.
Whisk well and simmer an additional 5 minutes. If the sauce doesn't thicken, whisk for one minute over medium heat.

Keeps well in the fridge for 1-2 weeks.
posted by dotgirl at 3:04 PM on September 14, 2012

That recipe I mentioned above should have a fourth ingredient: cayenne pepper (I believe the original recipe calls for 2 tsp, but I tend to add more because I like the extra spice).
posted by asnider at 3:13 PM on September 14, 2012

I was surprised recently to discover how easy it is to make satay sauce starting from whole peanuts, and I like being able to control how chunky it is. I've made the following recipe (which sounds fairly similar to yours) a couple of times with reasonable success, and it's really simple:

Onion, two cloves of garlic and a chilli minced up or blended.
200g peanuts, bashed up pretty viciously.
Splash of oil.
A couple of table spoons of coconut cream.
A couple of tablespoons of sugar.

Fry everything in a pot until it starts to smell good, maybe ten minutes. Add a splash of soy sauce and enough water to cover, then simmer until it's thick. Swirl some chilli oil on top to serve it if you have any.
posted by lucidium at 3:31 PM on September 14, 2012 [2 favorites]

Here's mine from items purchase at a Philipino grocery

in a small mustard jar combine:

30% spicy coconut vinegar

4 tablespoons of chunky Trader Joe's peanut butter with flax seeds. I add extra flax seeds.

warm black tea to encourage emulsification

2-3 teaspoons of ginger juice powder


I leave out soy products since they give me hot flashes. The ginger and chili vinegar make a great combination of spices.
posted by effluvia at 6:20 PM on September 14, 2012

I kind of throw peanut sauce together as the mood takes me, but the shortish version goes something like this:
- heat peanut oil in a small pan, throw in some v. fine diced shallots (2 tbsp-ish, onion if you have to) to soften
- after a min add a couple of v. fine diced garlic cloves and some ginger
- after 2 min add 1-2tsp (to taste) of whatever red curry paste is in the fridge
- open a can of coconut milk, add a little (1 tbsp?) to thin out the curry paste
- scoop in 1 cup of your preferred peanut butter (hope it is chunky, add up to another cup if you like peanut flavour over spice/heat)
- start stirring and adding more coconut milk. I start with a ratio something like 2 coconut milk : 3 peanut butter but care more about the consistency, go till it looks good to you.
- time to add the lime juice. Start with 1-2 tbsp, add to taste. Pay attention, too much and things start to separate in the pan.
- add a tbsp of palm sugar if you've got it, dark brown sugar if not. Adds a nice depth to the heat in a lot of thai food.

Stir more, serve, eat. Total elapsed time is less than 10 minutes. More peanut butter/coconut milk as required if the consistency is wrong; I like this warm so I tend to make it thicker than you would for a cold dipping sauce.
posted by N-stoff at 9:09 PM on September 14, 2012

This Epicurious Summer Roll recipe has a peanut sauce that sounds similar but not exact.

Here's another one, but the ingredients are all in one big paragraph, so check the instructions carefully. I've made both several times and they are GOOD.
posted by peep at 9:38 PM on September 14, 2012

I love love LOVE adapting this Food Network recipe for Satay sauce. I have never made the chicken but use the satay sauce at least once a week and often twice.

Often, I use soy sauce instead of fish sauce (work lunch), and add cilantro if it is in the house. One of the things I like about this recipe is that it should not be treated as a recipe: you make it with the right measures the first time, then adapt it as you prefer it for any future occasion. Personally, I like a thicker sauce, and sometimes add more or less coconut milk. Usually I pair the satay sauce with cucumber but it is very flexible.

Approximately, my base recipe is:
3 Tbsp peanut butter
1/8 c water
1/2 tsp lemon/lime juice
1-2 ice-cube sized chunk of coconut milk (I pre-freeze)
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp fresh ginger
1 tsp fresh garlic
1-2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp fresh cilantro
posted by whatzit at 3:22 AM on September 17, 2012

Other optional ingredients: vinegar (apple cider) and shallots.

Throw in blender, push go.
posted by whatzit at 3:22 AM on September 17, 2012

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