Thai Tofu Satay with Peanut Sauce
The perfect plant-based option for your next BBQ party! Try this grilled Thai Tofu Satay for the vegan main course that is so flavoursome and tastes authentically Thai. I adapted my Chicken Satay recipe to make this dish suitable for vegans and it’s so easy to make! It’s not a complicated recipe with tones of ingredients, it’s likely that you already have most of the ingredients in your cupboards already.
What exactly is Thai Tofu Satay? It’s rather simple, it’s tofu chunks left to marinate in Thai curry paste, coconut milk, turmeric and seasoning for at least 45 minutes. Then placed on skewers and grilled on the BBQ or in a pan. And of course, a satay of any kind would not be complete without a real peanut sauce! For extra points for authenticity, you could also make a side of Nam Ajaad, which is a pickled cucumber relish - also vegan friendly! You can check out the recipe for Nam Ajad in our Chicken Satay recipe here.
Let’s quickly talk about the tofu needed for this recipe. I recommend using extra-firm tofu as the last thing you want is for the tofu to fall apart as your placing them on the skewers! I’ve mentioned this brand before in previous blogs, I tend to gravitate towards the brand Tofoo as the tofu is already pre-pressed and now I see Tofoo available in most supermarkets (UK). If you can’t find this particular one, make sure you press out as much water as you can before starting.
How to Make Thai Tofu Satay
Once the tofu is ready to go (after pressing if necessary), we need to cut the tofu into equally sized cubes and set it to one side. In a large mixing bowl, pour 200ml coconut milk and mix with 1 teaspoon of Mae Jum Thai Yellow Curry Paste, 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder and 1 tablespoon of palm sugar or brown sugar with a pinch of salt. Mix all the ingredients together, making sure the sugar has dissolved.
Add the tofu chunks to the marinade and mix, making sure all the tofu sides have been coated with the marinade. You can now set this to one side for at least 45 minutes, longer if you have the patience! In the meantime, you can start making the peanut sauce and soaking the satay sticks. Skewers only need to be soaked in water if they are wooden.
On to the peanut sauce, I always recommend toasting the peanuts before hands even if it says it’s roasted already. After being toasted, the peanuts need to be crushed. This can be done the traditional way by using a pestle and mortar or the faster, simpler method in a food processor/blender. You can make the peanuts as smooth or chunky as you like, I personally prefer a chunky over smooth consistency.
Heat coconut oil in a saucepan and fry Mae Jum Thai Yellow Curry Paste. You can opt for red or panang too. Add the remaining coconut milk (200ml), light soya sauce, tamarind and palm sugar. Bring to a light boil and blend until smooth, simmer for 10 minutes to thicken a little bit. Add crushed peanuts and stir into the sauce, turn off the heat and set aside until ready to serve.
Now the tofu has marinated over some time, it’s now ready to be placed on satay sticks. Depending on how big or small the tofu cubes are, place 3 or 4 cubes per stick. On a pre-heated grill, place the tofu satay and grill on each side for a couple of minutes until all sides are golden and charred. Serve up with the ready-prepared peanut sauce and enjoy!
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