Being a lesser-known dish in Malaysia, Gado-gado is a dish that is found in Ayam Penyet restaurants. It is a type of salad that comprises of boiled vegetables and eggs, fried tofu, and crunchy prawn crackers drizzled in earthy chilli peanut sauce.
A bite of this colourful dish would induce a party in your mouth. The combination of flavours and textures are sure to leave an addictive aftertaste. Besides, one can enjoy Gado-gado with or without lontong—rice wrapped with banana leaf. In the latter case, it can serve as a filling main instead of a salad on the side.
Origin of Gado-gado
The name of this Indonesian dish translates to “mix-mix”. This offers a straightforward explanation as to the eating method of this dish. It also refers to the nature of the cuisine: a mix of everything. In Indonesia, this salad is a prominent dish where it is one of the five national dishes.
Gado Gado RecipeDifficulty: Easy
Warning: long ingredient list coming up, but no need to intimidated as once you have all the ingredients, assembling it is a piece of cake!
Long green beans (cut into pieces 4 to 5 cm long)
Shredded Chinese cabbage
Boiled steam potatoes
Ready-to-use fried shallot
Melinjo nut crackers
10 cloves of fried garlic
300g of roasted peanuts
1000ml of coconut milk
10 fried red chillies (without seeds)
One teaspoon of dried shrimp paste (terasi)
2-3 tablespoons of rice flour (dissolve in water)
20 boiled red bird eye chillies
½ teaspoon of sugar
Salt (amount depending on preference)
- First off begin with preparing the Gado-gado sauce. In a food processor, add garlic, peanuts, 500 ml of coconut milk, red chillies, terasi, and sugar. Blend it until it has a smooth appearance.
- In a saucepot, transfer the processed mixture in, and add the remaining 500 ml of coconut milk into the mix. Over low-medium heat, stir the mixture occasionally.
- Once the mixture is boiled (a way to tell is to watch out for a decrease in volume as well as the surface turning oily), add the rice flour mixture, and keep stirring for about 5 minutes until it starts bubbling. Then remove the saucepot from the heat.
- Moving on to preparing the sambal. Again, in a food processor, combine the red steam red birds eye chilli, sugar, and salt, and blend it (alternatively, you could do this with a mortar and pestle if you want to go for a more traditional method).
- With that, you’ve come to the final step, which is the serving of this dish. Decorate the plate with lettuce, slices of lontong, boiled potatoes, blanched vegetables, boiled egg, fried tempeh and tofu, tomato, and cucumber. Then pour the sauce over and garnish it with some fried shallots, shrimp crackers, and emping nut crackers.
- Set some sambal on the side to be added into the dish depending on your heat tolerance. With that, you have the complete Gado-gado to be enjoyed!
Ways to Enjoy The Dish
Being a flexible dish, this salad can be eaten for any meal of the day. You can easily modify the recipe depending on if you want it as a side, or as a main by merely taking off the rice.
Explore other popular Malaysian delights with Lokataste Recipe and more!