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Gado-gado is a beloved dish across Indonesia. Each region has a different spin: In Jakarta, it is a “double-carb” dish, featuring both potato and lontong (rice cakes). In West Java, it is known as lotek atah or karedok and served with raw vegetables. At the heart of any gado-gado is the spicy peanut sauce: Some versions call for tamarind, lime, terasi (shrimp paste) or coconut milk. Others use peanut butter instead of freshly pounded peanuts. This particular recipe is inspired by a home-cooked gado-gado eaten in Bali, where the rich, aromatic sauce was powered by shallots and garlic. Its sweetness comes from kecap manis, the thick, caramelly soy sauce foundational in Indonesian cooking, but, if you can’t find kecap manis, make your own (see Tip) or use sweet soy sauce.

By Hetty Lui McKinnon
Total Time
45 minutes
  • Yield:6 to 8 servings
  • subheading: FOR THE SALAD:
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons neutral oil, such as grapeseed or vegetable
  • 1 (14-ounce) package extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into ½-inch slices
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 10 ounces green beans, trimmed
  • ½ small napa cabbage, finely sliced
  • 6 ounces bean sprouts (about 2 cups)
  • 10 new potatoes or other small variety, peeled and halved
  • 1 large cucumber, peeled and sliced thinly on the diagonal
  • 2 tomatoes, each cut into 8 wedges
  • 4 boiled (8-minute) eggs, peeled and halved
  • ½ cup homemade or store-bought fried shallots
  • subheading: FOR THE SATAY SAUCE:
  • 1 cup roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 4 shallots, peeled and sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 to 2 red chiles, deseeded and sliced
  • 3 tablespoons kecap manis (see Tip)
  • 2 tablespoons palm or brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
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