Creamy Nut Sauce
The actual name of this nut sauce is sas. It’s Indian in origin, and the recipe I’m basing this on is out of the Foods of the World – The Cooking of India cookbook.
The sauce is made essentially with nuts and cream and is served with various kababs. Tomorrow I’ll be posting a recipe for Mughlai Kabobs, which are grilled, ground-lamb skewers. The kababs and the sauce together are pure heaven.
My most favorite dishes to order in Indian restaurants are the kormas – meats in creamy sauces made from nuts, although you’d never know it. The sauces are very delicate in flavor, yet scream decadence because of their richness.
So today I’m making this sauce, and tomorrow I’ll post the kababs.
Sas, or Creamy Nut Sauce
Pinch of saffron
1 tablespoon boiling water
1/3 cup pistachios
1/3 cup mixed almonds and cashews, blanched
Seeds of 4 cardamom pods
1 cup milk
1 tablespoons ghee
1 cup half and half
1 teaspoon salt
Place the saffron in a small bowl and add one tablespoon of boiling water; set the bowl aside. Given time, the hot water will leach the beautiful color and flavor of the saffron, which you can see as it changes color.
I happened to have green cardamom pods, so I peeled off the outer shell to reveal the actual spice pods. (There are also white cardamom pods.). Below I show the difference between the whole pods, the cardamom itself as it occurs naturally inside the pods, lower right, and some ground cardamom, upper right. If you own ground cardamom, you definitely don’t need to buy the pods. Just try to use the equivalent of ground.
Place all of the nuts, the cardamom pods and one cup of milk in a blender jar and blend until smooth.
Then place the ghee in a saucepan and melt it over medium heat. Pour in the nut and cream mixture and cook it for a couple of minutes.
Add the saffron and the water, the half and half and salt, and cook the mixture until it coats the back of a spoon.
Store the sauce and refrigerate until needed. Stay tuned tomorrow!
I have ALWAYS wanted to use saffron! I even love the history behind it! People would die they’re hair with it..intil they were told to stop by Henry the VIII..? I think it was him.
I don’t know about that, but when you see how tedious it is to pluck the flowers, you why it’s so expensive!
I know! Watched a special on it..and then read a book.
I’m a dork..lol. Can’t wait to make this and the kabobs!! You just completely inspired me!
A very delectable looking nut sauce! I love the saffron in here too! I Will make this tasty sauce tonight! MMMMMMM!
It would be good with just about anything!
Ooh, can’t wait to try this! I’ve been trying to learn more Indian dishes, and I always have saffron around (mostly for Arroz con Pollo).
Saffron is so interesting! There is a specific flavor that is not as subtle as you would think!
I agree– and the color it imparts is unique! (Hmm, maybe I should create a color palette based on saffron…)
A luxurious idea!
Wild & Delicious! Hope to try it out with kababs this summer…but I am not a lamb person, so anything but that.
Chicken, pork, veggies…..
Here is the sauce … I wonder where I would find it … this goes on file.
Oh my goodness but this looks rich and delicious! I’ve done some interesting vegetarian dishes with soaked cashews, so I can kind of imagine working with this! And it must be just amazing. :-)
Oh, I’ve done some of those, too!!! It’s very subtle and creamy.
That saffron is so gorgeous. I love Indian food. This looks so good I’d like to reach in and take some.
I know that feeling!
These are my favourite types of sauces in Indian restaurants too. This looks lovely.
They’re the best, even though they’re somewhat subtle.