If there’s one thing the whole world loves — and some U.S. Midwestern states in particular — it’s food on a stick. While we’re crazy for Middle Eastern kebabs, giant novelty lollipops (which apparently you’re not supposed to be able to finish) and all manners of corn dog, one region appears to have perfected the art. Thank you, Southeast Asia, satay is what’s for lunch.
Commonly thought of as a Thai creation, as it appears on every Thai menu we’ve ever perused, satay actually originates from Indonesia. In fact, it’s their national dish. To make it, simply cut your meat of choice into elongated slices the same length as the skewer, marinate overnight in soy, sugar, rice vinegar, turmeric (which lends a pleasant yellow hue), ginger and sesame oil. Vegetarians can get the same effect using firm tofu or seitan. Chargrill and serve with super secret dipping sauce, which is actually just peanut butter mixed with the marinade ingredients. Why no measurements or recipe? Wing it: These are important Asian ingredients to get familar with. Taste as you go, and suddenly you’ll realize you’ve just made satay. There’s plenty of room for interpretation.
Stick this week with the pointy end, and definitely reap the benefits of the party trick we’ve just taught you.