Friday, August 10, 2012

Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce

Eating to live gets fancy with this Thai-inspired spicy peanut sauce. In traditional Thai/Asian restaurants you would normally get a side of oil, sugar and excess salt in your peanut sauce. My version has been cleaned up significantly without sacrificing any flavor. This sauce can be used in a variety of dishes as a dressing or dipping sauce and will have you licking your plate clean. I enjoyed this sauce with vegan spring rolls and over warm kelp noodles (found in the Asian section of Whole Foods). While low in salt, the sauce is not salt-free as a low-sodium soy sauce is used. I have not done much research on low-sodium soy sauces and I'm sure I could find an even lower version but hey, even Dr. Fuhrman uses soy sauce occasionally!
Clockwise from top: Dr. Fuhrman's Almond Chocolate Dip (pg. 370 in Eat to Live); Fresh Strawberries for dipping; Spring Rolls (peppers, carrots, english cucumber, kale leaves, kelp noodles wrapped in a rice spring roll wrapper); Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce; Wine (if you must)
Spicy Thai Peanut Sauce
Adapted from: Fat Free Vegan
Makes about 1 cup of sauce
Indredients:
1/3 C Natural Peanut Butter, Smooth or Crunchy (the only ingredients permitted are peanuts)
2/3 C Water
1 T + 1 t Low-Sodium Soy Sauce
1 t Tamarind Paste (found in the Asian section of Whole Foods)
2 Cloves Grated Fresh Garlic
1 T Grated Fresh Ginger
1 t Red Pepper Flakes
Coarsely Chopped Green Onion to Taste (I used ~1/4C)

Directions: Combine all ingredients except green onions in a small sauce pan over low heat. Whisk until the mixture has become a smooth, creamy consistency. Take off heat and stir in the green onions. Serve hot over noodles or cold as a dip or salad dressing.


Notes: When used as a dip, the spice level will not be as intense with every bite. When used as a sauce, you will feel the spice much more. Feel free to add more or less red pepper flakes to taste. When this sauce is served in a warm dish, it will spread and not much will be needed.


I have to tell you, this peanut sauce feels like such an indulgence and I can tell I will count on this to get me through those tough "I can't believe I'm a vegan now" moments. I also have to praise Dr. Fuhrman's Almond Chocolate dip. Wow, does this stuff taste like pure decadence. Hope you give these recipes a try!

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