This tasty and versatile sauce combines two of my favorite ingredients – peanut butter and coconut milk.
Interestingly enough, both key ingredients are called “nuts”, even though neither one is! The peanut is actually a type of legume in which the pod matures underground, unlike most of the nuts we know, which grow on trees. The coconut does grow on a tree, but is actually a drupe and again, not a nut. Who knows, maybe that’s why they match so well together?
There are many versions for the sauce in the kitchens of Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and others. The recipe here is one of my versions for it. In other versions I may use other types of chili peppers, cilantro instead of mint, or both, palm sugar instead of honey, lime instead of the vinegar…– you get the picture.
The sauce keeps well in the fridge, in an airtight container, so don’t hesitate to prepare a large amount. Just reheat it gently before using, as the flavors are at their best when warmed up a bit.
Serve with grilled or roasted meats, seafood, tofu, steamed or fresh vegetables, rice noodles… Perfect for 4th of July BBQ weekend. :-)
Makes: 2 cups
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
3 Tbs chunky natural peanut butter (i.e. unsalted/unsweetened)
1 can (14oz, 400gr) coconut milk
2 Tbs rice wine vinegar
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs honey
1 tsp red curry paste
1 tsp green curry paste
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, finely grated
½ tsp salt
1 Tbs fresh red chili pepper
2 Tbs fresh mint, chopped
2 small scallions, chopped
1. In a medium pot, mix all the ingredients except for the chili, mint and scallions. Bring to the verge of boiling. Reduce the heat to low and cook for about 10 minutes, mixing occasionally, until the sauce thickens.
3. Take off the heat and mix in the chili, mint and scallions. Serve warm.