The peanutty, creamy taste of satay is one that we usually can’t say no to when ordering at a restaurant, but it can be a bit naughty too. We’ve got a healthy vegetarian option so you can still get your satay fix but with a hearty kick!

Makes 8

For marinade
2 tbs gluten-free soy sauce or tamari
2 tbs toasted sesame oil
1 tbs minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
1 tsp natural salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp minced fresh ginger
¼ tsp red pepper flakes

For vegetables and tofu
1 red bell pepper, ribbed, seeded, and cut into 3cm chunks
1 yellow bell pepper, ribbed, seeded and cut into 3cm chunks
1 small red onion, cut into 8 chunks
2 zucchinis, cut into 12mm rounds
8 button mushrooms, halved
16 cherry tomatoes
1 (397g) package extra-firm tofu, cut into 16 equal pieces

For sauce
½ tsp extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup minced shallot
½ cup full-fat canned coconut milk (shake, then pour)
½ cup roasted almond butter
2 tbs pumpkin seed oil, plus more to taste
2 tbs gluten-free soy sauce or tamari
1 ½ tbsp. fresh lime juice
2 tsp minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
2 tsp minced fresh giner
2 tsp coconut nectar, plus more to taste
1 tsp red curry paste, plus more to taste
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
1/8 tsp natural salt, plus more to taste

Optional boosters
1 tsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp finely chopped cilantro
1 tsp finely chopped basil


  1. If using bamboo skewers, soak eight in water for 30 minutes so the skewers won’t burn.
  2. To make the marinade, whisk all the ingredients together in a large mixing bowel.
  3. Add all of the vegetables (not the tofu) and toss to coat evenly. Transfer the vegetables to another bowl and use the marinade left in the bowl to coat the tofu by gently rolling the pieces in the marinade or by applying the marinade with a pastry brush so the pieces don’t break up.
  4. Preheat the oven to 220°C. Line 1 large baking sheet or 2 smaller baking sheets with silicone liners or parchment paper.
  5. Assemble the skewers by threading the vegetables and tofu onto each of eight skewers in the following order: 1 tomato, 1 mushroom half, 1 zucchini round, 1 red pepper piece, 1 yellow pepper piece, 1 tofu cube, 1 red pepper piece, 1 yellow pepper piece, 1 onion chunk, 1 zucchini round, 1 tofu cube, 1 mushroom half, 1 tomato. Place the skewers lengthwise on the prepared baking sheets. Reserve any remaining marinade.
  6. Roast the skewers for 15 minutes, until the vegetables are lightly browned. Remove from the oven, gently turn the skewers over, and roast for another 15 minutes, until the vegetables are tender. (Alternatively, grill the skewers over high heat for about 10 minutes on each side.)
  7. While the skewers are cooking, make the sauce. Throw all the sauce ingredients into your blender and blast on high for 30 to 60 seconds, until smooth and creamy. You may have to scrape down the sides of the container. Tweak the pumpkin seed oil, coconut nectar, curry paste, red pepper flakes, and salt to taste.
  8. Brush the cooked skewers with the reserved marinade and sprinkle with the herb boosters. Serve immediately and pass the sauce at the table.

This recipe is an extract from The Perfect Blend by Tess Masters, $35, Penguin Random House. Photography by Anson Smart.

Check out a classic cheesecake recipe by Tess for dessert right here.