HAVE YOU TRIED?
Cooking with Pic’s Crunchy Peanut Butter
IF NOT, YOU SHOULD HAVE!
When I discovered Pic’s Peanut Butter at the Nelson market over a decade ago, I was hooked, and would often order it online. Now it’s in supermarkets everywhere, much to my delight. It can’t be beaten on a piece of Vogel’s, but at my house it often makes its way into a meal too.
PAD THAI WITH SALMON SERVES 2
100g 5mm-thick rice noodles 3 tablespoons palm sugar,
finely grated or chopped 3 tablespoons fish sauce 2 tablespoons tamarind puree 2 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter 3 tablespoons vegetable oil 2 pieces skin-on salmon fillet 2 cloves garlic, sliced 1 shallot, thinly sliced 2 eggs 1 bunch Chinese chives (or use spring
onions), sliced into 2cm pieces 250g packet bean sprouts 2 tablespoons roughly chopped roasted peanuts, 2-3 tablespoons fried shallots and lime wedges to serve Soak the noodles in cold water for 30 minutes – they should still be quite firm. Make the sauce by putting the palm sugar, fish sauce and tamarind in a small saucepan and gently heating until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and add the peanut butter. Set aside.
In a large wok, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil, add the salmon, cook for 2-3 minutes each side, then remove and set aside. Add the remaining oil, the drained noodles and half the sauce and stir constantly for a minute. If the noodles at this point seem a little undercooked, add a tablespoon or two of water. Push the noodles to one side of the wok and add the garlic and shallot. Stir well for a minute until beginning to colour. Toss the noodles with the garlic and shallot, then push to the side again and break in the eggs. Break up with a spatula, then leave for a minute or so, flip over and break into smaller pieces.
Turn off the heat, add the chives and bean sprouts and combine all the ingredients together. Allow the chives and bean sprouts to wilt slightly. Taste and add a little more of the sauce if needed and adjust with extra fish sauce, sugar, lime juice and chilli flakes as necessary. Divide between two plates. Break up the salmon and add to the plates, scattering with the peanuts and shallots and serving with lime wedges. (DF) (GF) (HF)
Vegetarian gado gado
Cook a chopped shallot in sunflower oil with a couple of cloves of chopped garlic, ½ chopped red chilli, a thinly sliced lemongrass stalk, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar, ¼ cup crunchy peanut butter, ½ cup coconut milk and 1 teaspoon brown sugar or palm sugar. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for a minute or two. Adjust seasonings as required. Serve a platter of soft- or hard-boiled eggs and vegetables such as boiled new potato, blanched green beans, shredded cabbage, asparagus, cucumber, tomatoes and carrots with the peanut sauce and lime wedges.
Pork curry with coconut
Fry 500g pork stir-fry (or thinly cut steaks) to brown. Add sliced shallot, a sliced lemongrass stalk and a few kaffir lime leaves and fry for another minute. Add 1-2 tablespoons red curry paste, 1 cup chicken stock or water, ½ cup coconut milk and 2 tablespoons crunchy peanut butter and bring to a gentle simmer. Add bamboo shoots and bean sprouts. Adjust seasoning with fish sauce and lime juice. Serve with rice and greens. CREDITS White and grey speckled plates (gnocchi), Richard Naylor Ceramics; speckled plates (schnitzel), Holly Houston Ceramics; wooden cup, Walk in the Park; white bowls, Betty Chung Ceramics. For full details, see Credits Index.