Friday, August 31, 2007

easy multi-purpose asian salad dressing

peanut butter sauces have always been one of my favourites, especially when smothering a plateful of vegetarian pan-fried szechuan dumplings or dressing up a spicy chicken & napa cabbage salad. thankfully, i have no allergies to peanut products like so many people today seem to have. gone are the days when (almost) every kid brought peanut butter sandwiches to school for lunch.

so, if you are in a peanut-friendly house and can safely enjoy sauces and salad dressings like this, it makes for a nice change from the everyday oil and vinegar based kind — especially since this one is considered to be calorie reduced.

tangy 'n spicy peanut butter sauce

this sauce is quite versatile as it can be used as a salad dressing, a sauce for a pasta salad, a dipping sauce for vegetables, a compliment to asian dumplings or whatever else the mind conjures up. quite light, in comparison to other kinds of peanut butter-based sauces, this one is taken from one of the many moosewood cookbooks which, for the most part, always seems to have quite decent recipes. the following version is considered to be a calorie-reduced one as it uses water and tomato instead of introducing any more oil.

makes about 1 cup


4 tbsp smooth peanut butter
2 - 4 tbsp water (start with 2 T)
1 large clove garlic
1 green chili, seeds removed
2 tbsp rice vinegar or regular type
1 tbsp honey or brown rice syrup
1 tbsp soy sauce (dark or japanese type)
1/4 c diced tomato (don't omit)
1 inch cube fresh ginger
2 tsp lemon or lime juice


coarsely chop (or mince if your blender is not that strong) the ginger, garlic and green chili. decide beforehand how hot you want it -- perhaps start with half the chili, if you don't like things too hot.

place all in a blender or food processor and blend until completely smooth. add the extra 2 T of water, if needed. taste and adjust. it shouldn't need salt as it comes from the soy sauce (unless you are using low sodium type).

keep in the refrigerator.



Emily DeVoto, Ph.D., said...

Yummmm! This is one dressing that won't last long in my fridge because I'll eat it in a couple of days. I love the tomato idea.

Mmm, peanut butter...

burekaboy — said...

hi em - doesn't last long in mine either ;) for a so-called, ahem, low-fat version, it's pretty good. hope you like it.

Emily DeVoto, Ph.D., said...

I'm sure I will... btw, just posted a new recipe on my food blog!

burekaboy — said...

emily - lemme know what you thought of it -- will be over to check it out :)