Cooking · Countries · Olympic Games Rio 2016

Indonesia – Gado-Gado

A lot of time when into selecting a dish to make from the Indonesian section of The New York Times International Cook Book.  The reason is that each dish seemed to have an ingredient that was going to be difficult to find.  I selected the most difficult one and then regretted the decision when I was unable to find what I needed.  Looking back Sate Babi would have been a good, easy choice instead I decided to make Gado-Gado, an Indonesian Salad.  This takes some time to put together.



  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 1/4 cups of vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup freshly roasted, shelled, hulled, peanuts
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of peanut butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered kentjur or 2 or 3 pieces whole
    • Kentjur is related to ginger but is more delicate and fragrant
  • 1 djeruk purut leaf
    • This is often referred to as the Kaffir Lime Leaf.  This are difficult to find.  I have had no success finding these in local stores.  I used the juice of one lime  as a substitute.
  • 1/2 teaspoon trasi (shrimp paste)
    • I substituted fish sauce
  • 3 tamarind pods
    • I found these at Whole Foods
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 small hot red pepper, finely chopped (optional) or Tabasco to taste
  • 1 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of paprika
  • 1/2 cup of Coconut Milk
  1. Cook the garlic and onion in half of the oil until the onion is wilted.
  2. Spoon this into the container of an electric blender and add the peanuts, peanut butter, kentjur, dkeruk purut leaf, and trasi.
  3. Remove and discard the seeds from the tamarind and add the pulp to the blender.
  4. Add one-quarter cup of the water, the hot pepper, and brown sugar.
  5. Blend
  6. Heat the remaining oil in a skillet and add the paprika.
  7. Cook briefly, stirring, and add the blender mixture.
  8. Add the coconut milk and remaining one-half cup water to the blender to pick up any mixture remaining.
  9. Add this to the skillet and bring to a boil, stirring.
  10. Keep warm.


  • 2 small, waxy new potatoes
  • Salt
  • 1 pound of green beans, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2 inch lengths (about 4 cups when ready to cook)
  • 1 pound of spinach, picked over and tough stems removed
  • 1 pound of fresh bean sprouts or 1 1-pound can, drained
    • I omitted these because I don’t like them
  • 2 bean curds
    • Tofu
  1. Cook the potatoes in boiling salted water to cover until tender.
  2. Drain and cool.
  3. When cool enough to handle, peel and slice.
  4. Bring four cups of water to a boil add salt and cook the green beans until crisp tender.
    1. Do not overcook.
  5. Remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  6. Cook the spinach in the liquid in which the beans cooked.
  7. Cook briefly, just until the spinach is wilted thoroughly.
  8. Remove the spinach with the spoon and drain well.
  9. Pour the vegetable liquid quickly over the bean sprouts and drain quickly.
    1. Do not cook.
  10. Fry the bean curds in hot oil until golden brown on one side, then turn and cook on the other side.
  11. cut into bite-sized pieces.


  • 2 hard-cooled eggs, thinly sliced
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
  1. To serve, arrange a layer of green beans on a platter.
  2. Cover with a layer of spinach and the bean sprouts.
  3. Garnish with the bean curd pieces, sliced potatoes, bard-cooked egg slices, and cucumber slices.
  4. Pour the hot sauce over all and serve immediately.

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