Gado Gado – An Indonesian Dish
By Florencia Tagliavini, Nutritionist
Daydreaming about our 2 month Bali trip back in 2016 – I kept remembering that incredible spicy peanut sauce that was served with many dishes. “Gado Gado”, which is one of the well-known typical dishes of Indonesia was one of my favorites. “Gado Gado” means, ¨mix-mix¨ and it’s a pretty easy to assemble salad or mix of vegetables that can include green beans, bean sprouts, spinach, cabbage, with the addition of tofu, hard-boiled eggs, and is usually served with something crunchy on the side like prawn crackers. The combination of ingredients varies slightly depending on what vegetables are in season and the different areas of Indonesia, but it’s always tossed with the rich, creamy, delicious spicy peanut sauce that perfectly combines a slightly sweet, spicy and savory taste of all ingredients.
I looked at various recipes and decided to give it a try with the common ingredients I had on hand. Some versions of the peanut sauce include coconut milk and require a little cooking and other versions are raw, quick and easy which is what I went for. I like simple but delicious!
I also like nutritious meals and this dish offers a nourishing and balanced assortment of foods. We have a good variety of veggies that provide a lot of nourishment. Green beans and spinach have a ton of vitamin K and A; cabbages & radishes are great sources of vitamin C and so is the natural lime juice in the sauce. We have great sources of protein from the tofu, eggs, and peanuts which also provide vitamin E, B vitamins, and heart-healthy fats. When this whole dish comes together it;s super nutritious providing a good source of protein, fiber, calcium, iron, various other minerals as well as vitamins and antioxidants.
Here is the recipe:
- 1-1/2 cups green beans
- 4 hard-cooked large eggs, peeled and halved
- 3 cups fresh bean sprouts
- 2 cups shredded cabbage
- 1 handful radishes, sliced
- 3 cups of fresh spinach
- 1 pkg. (14 oz.) extra-firm tofu, cubed, drained and rinsed
- Salt and pepper
For peanut sauce:
- 1 clove of garlic (minced)
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 cup of peanuts
- 1–2 fresh chilies (minced)
- Juice of 2 limes
- 1 tablespoon low-salt soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce (optional)
- Start by prepping all your salad ingredients: boil eggs, steam or boil green beans & slice radishes, wash spinach and any other veggies if necessary.
- Heat oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Cook tofu until crisp and browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Add a little salt & pepper.
- Arrange green beans, egg halves, bean sprouts, cabbage, radishes, spinach, and tofu on a bowl or plate. Serve with sauce.
For the peanut sauce:
- Place peanuts in the NutraMilk and set butter cycle for 2 minutes – press start.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and press mix (do not change the default time of 1 min) and you are ready to serve the sauce.
- If you want a thinner consistency, add some water to achieve your desired consistency and press mix again.