• Sharon Rhys

Tofu Satay

Updated: May 10, 2021

Satay is a popular dish easily found in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand. Traditionally made with chicken or beef but this version is made for all meatless eaters out there. Served with spicy peanut sauce, fresh cucumber, sweet red onion and compressed rice, tofu satay is just as delicious as chicken or beef satay.

This version of satay is pan fried in a skillet over the stove. While this satay is missing the charred and smoky flavor from a charcoal grill, it is still flavorful from the marinade. Feel free to cook the marinated tofu in skewers over a charcoal grill. Just remember to baste them in coconut oil as you are grilling the tofu satay.



Makes: ~8 skewers



Whole Spices

2 tbsp. fennel seeds

1 tbsp. cumin seeds

1 tsp. black pepper


  1. To a pan on low heat, add the whole spices.

  2. Roast by stirring constantly until the spices are fragrant. The spices should turn slightly darker but not burnt.

  3. Remove from heat.

  4. Add the roasted spices into the food processor.


99 g / 3.5 oz. shallots (peeled)

60 g / 2.1 oz. galangal (peeled and grated)

40 g / 1.4 oz. ginger (peeled)

9 g / 0.3 oz. fresh turmeric (peeled)

4 garlic cloves (peeled)

1 lemongrass stalk (sliced)

1 tbsp. ground coriander


  1. Into the same food processor, add the aromatics.

  2. Blend / Process into a fine paste.

  3. Add the seasoning and pulse the food processor a few times to combine with the paste.

  4. Remove the spice paste from the food processor and set aside.

Remaining Ingredients

396 g / 14 oz. firm tofu (drained, pressed and sliced to ½” rectangles)

¼ - 1/3 cup grapeseed oil



red onion


  1. In a glass food container add the tofu rectangles.

  2. Add and rub the prepared spice paste into the tofu.

  3. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

  4. The following day, remove the tofu from the refrigerator 30 mins before cooking.

  5. In a skillet on medium heat, add the oil. Once the oil heats up, add the marinated tofu.

  6. Pan fry the tofu on all sides until fragrant and cooked through. Add more oil during the pan frying process if necessary.

  7. Present the tofu in bamboo skewers and serve immediately with sides as well as spicy peanut sauce.


Aromatics and Spices

50 g / 1.8 oz. shallots (peeled)

3 – 4 garlic cloves (peeled)

8 dried red chili peppers (softened in water)

1 lemongrass stalk (use only white section; reserve green section)

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

3 tbsp. water


  1. In a food processor, add the aromatics and spices.

  2. Blend / Process into a fine paste. Set aside.

Remaining Ingredients

¼ cup grapeseed oil

1 cup water

1 cup roasted peanuts (lightly ground)

3 – 4 tbsp. palm sugar or to taste

1 tbsp. tamarind pulp + ¼ cup hot water (mix the pulp and hot water together until a paste is formed. Discard seeds and reserve tamarind paste)

1 tsp. salt or to taste


  1. In a small pot on medium heat, add the oil. Once the oil heats up, add the spice paste and the green section of the lemongrass.

  2. Sauté until fragrant and toasty. You should see oil separation between the oil and spice paste.

  3. Add the water, peanuts, palm sugar, tamarind paste and salt to taste. Stir to combine.

  4. Cook at medium low heat for ~ 10 mins or until thickened.

  5. Taste test one last time. Adjust sugar and/or salt to your liking.

  6. Turn off heat, cool and serve with tofu satay.


Did you try this recipe?

If you did, let me know how it went. Don’t forget to tag your photo with #sncxkitchen when you share on Instagram.

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