Tender slices of meat marinated in a spicy peanut sauce? What’s not to love about satay? Whether you visit an Indonesian or Singaporean restaurant, this delectable sauce is bound to be one of the tastiest things you’ve ever eaten.
The origins of satay sauce
Spanish and Portuguese merchants were the ones to introduce peanuts to Europe in 1600, all the way from Mexico. This nut then found a home in the gardens and kitchens of many Indonesians, where satay sauce originated and became a national dish. However, due to its flavours it also gained traction in various other countries, including Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia.
Most countries have their own variations of satay sauce. Although the marinade recipe stays the same, you may find a wide variety of proteins being used for this dish. This sauce has also become a firm favourite in the Netherlands, where it has become a part of most people’s everyday diet. When you visit this country you can find a version of this marinade in most grocery stores.
The beauty of this sauce
Satay is made by heating a little vegetable oil and frying a finely sliced onion and a clove of garlic until translucent but not brown. After this, the chef typically adds half a cup of crunchy peanut butter, half a cup of water, sweet soy sauce and chopped red chilli. The sauce is then left to reduce until it’s a consistent texture. Once cooled, it can be used as a marinade or a dip.
Satay is typically used for chicken, beef or pork. However, you may even find it used to marinate shrimp, fish or tofu. On the more extreme side, you can order crocodile, horse or snake meat that has been seasoned with this sauce. You can choose to enjoy the sauce as a dip for grilled meat or make it a complete meal by adding rice and vegetables to your order. Just remember to keep an ice-cold beer nearby to tame the burn.
Treat yourself to a meaty snack
Although you may be able to prepare satay at home, you are unlikely to get the full experience when doing so. The intense flavours of the sauce are magnified when eaten with flame-grilled meat, which means that the best spicy peanut sauce dishes are produced in authentic restaurants and street food stalls.
Whether you go for a spicy or a mild version of this classic dish, you can find a restaurant that caters to your preferences. Place your order at Syifa Satay and enjoy the onions, cucumber and ketupat that comes along with your meal.