An Indonesian mega salad
“This is a mega salad that has its roots in Sundanese cooking and has now become the typical street food of Jakarta in Indonesia. Gado-gado means medley or potpourri, which refers to all the different seasonal veggies and ingredients that are used, making it slightly different wherever you go and whatever the time of year. Tossed with the most incredible peanut dressing, which to be honest is more of a substantial sauce, and served with something crunchy on the side, such as prawn crackers, it’s a winning combination. ”
Nutrition per serving
Calories 505 25%
Fat 27g 39%
Saturates 5.3g 27%
Protein 27.4g 61%
Carbs 40.1g 15%
Sugars 19.8g 22%
For the salad:
400 g new potatoes
4 large free-range eggs
400 g firm silken tofu
½ Chinese cabbage
2 ripe tomatoes
1 handful of radishes
2 handfuls beansprouts (ready to eat)
½ bunch of fresh coriander
prawn crackers , optional
1 fresh bird\’s-eye chili , optional
For the sauce:
1 clove of garlic
50 g palm sugar
120 g crunchy peanut butter
1–2 fresh red chillies
2 limes , juice of
2 teaspoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon low-salt soy sauce
1 tablespoon tamarind paste
Start by prepping all your salad ingredients. Scrub the potatoes and cook in boiling salted water for around 15 minutes, or until tender, then halve or slice up.
Soft-boil the eggs for 6 minutes, or longer if you prefer them more cooked.
Cut the tofu into 2½cm chunks and fry in a splash of sesame oil for around 15 minutes, or until golden, then sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
Finely shred the cabbage if you want it raw or, if you’d rather cook it (which is traditional), cut it into 2cm slices, place in a colander and slowly pour a kettle of boiling water over the top. For me, this is the perfect amount of heat to soften the cabbage, but means you keep much of the delicious nutrients in there – feel free to apply this to any other seasonal greens you can find, too.
Cut the tomatoes into wedges, quarter the radishes and slice the cucumber (I use my crinkle-cut knife – you should get one!). Season everything from a height with a little salt.
Next, put all the sauce ingredients into a blender, peeling the garlic and grating in the palm sugar (if needed), then blitz until smooth. Have a taste and adjust the seasoning, making sure the acidity of the lime sings through, so tweak with more, if needed.
Traditionally, you’d take a little bit of everything, put it into a bowl and pour the sauce over the top, which is a fine way to serve it. I like to do the reverse, because I feel that once you pour the sauce over you can’t see the care and attention that has gone into the preparation of the ingredients. So I spoon the sauce between four bowls, spread it up around the sides, then divide the ingredients around the bowls, taking a bit of pride in making them look nice.
Pick over a few coriander leaves, add the prawn crackers and some finely sliced fresh chilli (if using), then show everyone what a celebration of food this is by getting them to toss together their very own portion.
With minty lemon yogurt for dipping
“The beauty of this dish is that you get the smoke and theater of a barbecued leg of lamb, but the security of knowing that it’s properly cooked because you given it a bit of a head-start in the oven. ”
Cooks In1 hour plus marinating & resting
Difficulty :Super easy
3 sticks lemon grass
5 cm piece fresh root ginger , peeled and chopped
5 cloves garlic , peeled and chopped
6 lime leaves
1 good pinch ground cumin
1 lemon , zest and juice of
freshly ground black pepper
1 quality leg of lamb , boned and butterflied
a few sprigs fresh mint , leaves picked and finely chopped
fat-free natural yoghurt
rocket , to serve
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Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6. Light the barbecue and prepare a hot side and a cooler side.
Halve the lemongrass lengthways, and peel and roughly chop the ginger and garlic, then bash in a large pestle and mortar with the lime leaves.
Add the cumin, finely grate in the zest from 1 lemon, and squeeze in its juice. Mix well.
Season the lamb with sea salt and black pepper, then rub the marinade all over and leave to marinate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.
Place the lamb in a snug-fitting roasting tray, cover tightly with a double layer of tin foil, then roast for 40 minutes if you like your meat pink, or slightly longer if you prefer it more well done.
Transfer the lamb to the hot side of the barbecue for 10 to 15 minutes, or until you have a lovely smoky, crispy surface – it will sizzle and there might even be a few flames, but move it around to stop it burning. Remove to a board to rest.
Meanwhile, pick, finely chop and place the mint leaves in a bowl, add a few good dollops of yogurt and a good squeeze of lemon juice, then mix together and season to perfection.
Slice up the lamb, then serve with the minty yogurt and wedges of lemon for squeezing over. Delicious served with a seasonal salad.