Spiced to Health: Balinese Yellow Sauce
However, every once in awhile, when I light my traditional morning incense (just like the Balinese), I crave the sunshine, the fruit, and the flavorful food that we ate there during our time. Finally, starved of my delicious Balian memories, I decided to make Base Gede, the Balinese yellow sauce that is the start to almost every dish. Without Base Gede, you cannot make traditional Balinese dishes such as Gado Gado, or Nasi Campur.
15 cloves garlic (about 1 whole bulb)
3-4 inch long galangal root
3-4 inch ginger root
2 thumb size pieces of turmeric
4 whole macadamia nuts (or 8 halves)
2 red hot Thai chilies (small)
3 red chilies (medium)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg powder
2 teaspoons shrimp paste
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon white peppercorns (or use more black)
2 whole cloves
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
1 stalk of lemongrass, pounded and tied in a knot
2 bay leaves
With a mortar and pestle, or in a clean coffee grinder, grind your coriander seeds, peppercorns, and cloves until fine. Add to the food processor and process until everything forms a fine paste.
In a medium sauce pan heat the coconut oil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and add the paste and coconut sugar. Mix together. Add the lemongrass and bay leaves, and a generous pinch of sea salt and sauté for 7 minutes on low heat. Continue to stir to make sure it doesn't burn. Finally, remove the bay leaves and the lemongrass.
Pour into a glass container and store in the refrigerator for two weeks. You can also freeze the sauce in an ice cube tray. Use in your favorite Balinese recipe or in any stir-fry, soup, or marinade that you are making at home.
Note: Only about 1-2 tablespoons is normally used in a recipe because the sauce is very aromatic.
3. Worlds Healthiest Foods. Garlic. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=60. Accessed October 23, 2014.