Empty Peanut Butter Jar

Empty Peanut Butter Jar

I treasure a yellowed 5"X7" card containing the original of this recipe. In 1974, my first husband and I lived near a young North Dakota couple, Carol and Jim Krogh, on Dayandang Street in Naga City in the Philippines. Carol and Jim landed in Naga a year before we did, and knew many valuable secrets of living well in southeast Asia. They shared generously, and this recipe is one of their gifts. As I remember it, Carol said this particular sauce was Malaysian. She and Jim had taken the extraordinary "circle tour" of Asian countries at the midpoint in their Peace Corps tours. They may have met Sate with no accent marks on that tour. In the Philippines, peanut sauce went with things grilled or roasted on a stick. People called the sauce "Satay," pronounced "suh-TIE." We've made hundreds of versions of this sauce in 32 years, typically using less soy sauce than the original recipe, and varying the level of fiery peppers, acid, and sweetness. It works just like it's written, too.

Transcribed from Carol's clear, calm 1974 handwriting, here is "Sate Sauce," with no accent on the "e," which we pronounced as the Filipinos did. Enjoy finding your own Satay.

1/2 c. soy sauce 1/2 c. water 1 c. peanut butter 1/4 c. kalamansi juice (kalamansi is a small tropical citrus fruit, a bit like lime, lemon, and tangerine) 1/3 c. sugar 1 hot pepper, minced, or hot sauce to taste

Blend together and cook until thick.