|Alternative names||Sate, Satai, Satti|
|Course||Entrée or main course|
|Place of origin||Indonesia|
|Region or state||Java|
|Main ingredients||Skewered and grilled meats with various sauces, mainly peanut sauce|
|Variations||Numerous variations across Southeast Asia|
|This article is part of the series on|
Satay (// SAH-tay, in USA also // sah-TAY, // sa-TAY), or sate in Indonesian spelling, is a Southeast Asian dish of seasoned, skewered and grilled meat, served with a sauce. The earliest preparations of satay is believed to have originated in Java island, but has spread to almost anywhere in Indonesia, where it has become a national dish. Indonesian satay is often served with peanut sauce – a sauce made from peanut butter, and is often accompanied with lontong, a type of rice cake, though the diversity of the country has produced a wide variety of satay recipes. It is also popular in many other Southeast Asian countries including Brunei, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. It is also recognized and popular in Suriname and the Netherlands.  In Sri Lanka, it has become a staple of the local diet as a result of the influences from the local Malay community.
Satay may consist of diced or sliced chicken, goat, mutton, beef, pork, fish, other meats, or tofu; bamboo skewers are often used, while rustic style of preparations employ skewers from the midrib of the coconut palm frond. These are grilled or barbecued over a wood or charcoal fire, then served with various spicy seasonings. Satay can be served in various sauces; however, most often they are served in a combination of soy and peanut sauce. Hence, peanut sauce is often called satay sauce. It is popular as street food, and it can be obtained from a travelling satay vendor, from a street-side tent-restaurant, in an upper-class restaurant, or at traditional celebration feasts.
Close analogues are yakitori from Japan, kǎoròu chuàn from China, seekh kebab from the Indian Subcontinent, shish kebab from Turkey and the Middle East, shashlik from Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, and sosatie from South Africa. It is listed at number 14 on World's 50 most delicious foods readers' poll compiled by CNN Go in 2011.
Although both Thailand and Malaysia claim it as their own, its Southeast Asian origin was in Java, Indonesia. There satay was developed from the Indian kebab brought by the Muslim traders. Even India cannot claim its origin, for there it was a legacy of Middle Eastern influence.
Jennifer Brennan (1988), Encyclopaedia of Chinese and Oriental Cookery
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the English word satay is derived from the Malay word satai, also saté or sate in Indonesian, ultimately originating from Tamil catai (சதை, a regional variant of tacai meaning 'flesh'. The term is mentioned as saté in Dutch with one of earliest photographs of satay seller appeared circa 1870 in Java, Dutch East Indies. The usage in English was first attested in 1917 with reference to a "satai" seller in Singapore, later a mention of saté in Denpasar, Bali appeared in 1937, with a description of Malays cooking satay appearing in 1955. Satay may have been developed by Javanese street vendors as an adaptation of kebabs from the Indian Subcontinent. The introduction of satay, and other now-iconic dishes such as tongseng and gulai kambing based on meats such as goat and lamb, coincided with an influx of Indian and Arab traders and immigrants starting in the 18th century. The Indonesian publication Koran Jakarta claimed that sate, and ultimately satay, originated from Javanese term sak beteng which means one stick, and that the dish had existed as early as the 15th century.
From Java, satay spread through the Indonesian Archipelago and, as a consequence, numerous variations of the dish have been developed. By the late-19th century, satay had crossed the Strait of Malacca into neighbouring Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand. In the 19th century, the term migrated, presumably with Malay immigrants from the Dutch East Indies, to South Africa, where it is known as sosatie. The Indo Dutch people took this dish, as well as many other Indonesian specialties, to the Netherlands, thereby influencing Dutch cuisine.
Satay can be made from various meats. Meat commonly used includes chicken, lamb, goat, mutton, beef, venison, and rabbit; seafood such as fish, shrimp, and squid; or offal such as liver, intestine, and tripe. Some have also used more exotic varieties of meat, such as turtle, crocodile, horse, lizard, and snake meat. Chicken is most common, but the other meats are frequently used. Satay is made by cutting the meat into small cube shapes, about thumb-size. However, such recipes as Ponorogo use chicken fillet cut into an elongated finger-like shape, thus one skewer holds only one piece. Yogyakarta has a special goat satay called Sate Klatak the difference between other satays is using iron bars for the stick.
The skewers used for chicken satay are traditionally made from lidi, a midrib of coconut fronds. Bamboo skewers might be used instead. For firmer meats, such as lamb, goat, and beef, a thicker bamboo skewer is used. The skewers are usually soaked in water before using to avoid burning during grilling. Each skewer usually holds four pieces of meat, some only three pieces. A goat meat satay might insert a cube of fat between meat cubes. Turmeric is required to marinate satay to give the dish its characteristic yellow colour. Another popular marinade is sweet soy sauce mixed with coconut oil or palm margarine. The skewered meat is seasoned, marinated, and then grilled on charcoal embers.
Satay may be served with a spicy peanut sauce dip, or peanut gravy, served with slices of lontong or ketupat (rice cakes), garnished with a sprinkle of bawang goreng (crisp fried shallot), and accompanied by acar (pickles) consisting of slivers of onions, carrots, and cucumbers in vinegar, salt, and sugar solution. Mutton satay is usually served with kecap manis (sweet soy sauce) instead of peanut sauce. Pork satay can be served in a pineapple-based satay sauce or cucumber relish.
See also: Street food of Indonesia
Satay can be prepared home-made or acquired from satay sellers; either from fancy restaurants, modest tarp-tent warung eateries stationed on busy street side, to travelling food vendors frequenting residential areas. Indeed, satay is possibly one of the most popular street food in Southeast Asia; common in Indonesia to Malaysia and Thailand.
In Indonesia, traditionally there are several methods on selling satay. They are:
In Indonesia there are some restaurants that specialised on serving various kinds of satay and present it as their speciality, such as Sate Ponorogo Restaurant, Sate Blora Restaurant, and also chains of Sate Khas Senayan restaurants, previously known as Satay House Senayan.
Satay (known as sate in Indonesian and pronounced similar to the English "satay") is a widely renowned dish in almost all regions of Indonesia; it is considered the national dish and one of Indonesia's best dishes. Satay is a staple in Indonesian cuisine, served everywhere from street carts to fine dining establishments, as well as in homes and at public gatherings. As a result, many variations have been developed throughout the Indonesian Archipelago. The satay variants in Indonesia is usually named after the region its originated, the meats, parts or ingredients its uses, also might named after the process or method of cooking.
Known as sate in Malay (and pronounced similarly to the English "satay"), it can be found throughout all the states of Malaysia in restaurants and on the street, with hawkers selling satay in food courts and Pasar malam. While the popular kinds of satay are usually beef and chicken satays, different regions of Malaysia have developed their own unique variations. Sate is often associated with Muslim Malays, but pork sate is also available at non-halal Chinese eating establishments.
There are a number of well-known satay outlets in Kajang, a city in Selangor closely associated with satays. Sate Kajang is a generic name for a style of sate where the meat chunks are bigger than normal, and the sweet peanut sauce served along with a portion of fried chilli paste. Given its popularity, sate Kajang is now found throughout Malaysia. Stalls and restaurants around Kajang offer not only the more traditional chicken or beef satay, but also more exotic meats such as venison, rabbit or fish, as well as gizzard, liver, and a number of other variations.
Another type of meat satay is the sate lok-lok from Penang and sate celup (dip satay) from Malacca. Both are Malaysian Chinese fusions of the hotpot and the Malay satay. Pieces of raw meat, tofu, century eggs, quail eggs, fish cake, offal or vegetables are skewered on bamboo sticks. These are cooked by being dipped in boiling water or stock. The satay is then eaten with a sweet, dark sauce, sometimes with chilli sauce as an accompaniment. If the satay is eaten with satay sauce, it is called sate lok-lok. If the satay is cooked with boiling satay peanut sauce, it is called sate celup. Both dishes are available from street vendors or in certain restaurants, and the majority are not halal. Customers use a common container containing boiling stock to personally cook their satay. Sauces are either served in common containers or individually. There are usually no tables near street vendors, and customers thus tend to gather around the food cart.
Satay gula apong is a chicken or buffalo meat satay. It is a satay made with rare nipah palm sugar called sarawak gula apong. This rare satay can only be found in Linggi, Negeri Sembilan in Malaysia. It is served with sliced fresh cucumber and peanut sauce.
Known as saté or sateh, it is fully adapted in Dutch everyday cuisine. Owed to their shared colonial history, satay is an Indonesian food that has become an integral part of Dutch cuisine. Pork and chicken satays are almost solely served with spicy peanut sauce and called een sateetje, and are readily available in snackbars and supermarkets. Versions with goat-meat (sateh kambing) and sweet soy sauce are available in Indonesian restaurants and take-aways. Pork or chicken satay in peanut sauce, with salad and French-fries, is popular in pubs or eetcafes. With Indonesian take-away meals like nasi goreng speciaal, the special part is often a couple of sate-sticks. Another favourite in Dutch snackbars is the satékroket, a croquette made with a peanut sauce and shredded meat ragout. In addition, 'saté' sauce has become one of the standard options as a condiment to accompany a portion of fries bought in a snackbar (besides mayonnaise, ketchup, spiced curry-ketchup or 'joppiesaus').
Satay proper is known as satti in the Southern Philippines (Mindanao). It is common in the regions of Zamboanga, Sulu Archipelago and Tawi-Tawi, which acquired satay from its proximity to Malaysia. Satti usually only has three small strips of roasted meat on a stick. Satti is usually made from chicken or beef among Muslim Filipinos, but it can also be made with pork or liver. It is particularly popular in Tausug cuisine and is commonly eaten as breakfast in restaurants which specialise in satti. It is typically served with ta'mu (pusô in other Philippine languages) and a bowlful of warm sauce.
In the majority of the Philippines, a similar (but native) dish to satay usually made with pork or chicken is referred to as inihaw or inasal, or by the generic English name "barbecue" (usually shortened to "BBQ"). It is usually served glazed in a sweet-soy sauce marinade reminiscent of yakitori. Despite the native origins of inasal and inihaw, the English association of "barbecue" is the source of names for other popular street foods that are also served skewered, such as banana cue ("banana" + "barbecue") and camote cue ("camote (sweet potato) + barbecue").
Offal-based versions of inihaw are also commonly sold in the Philippines as street food. The most popular are made from chicken or pork intestines known as isaw. Other variants use liver, tripe, lungs, chicken heads and feet, cubes of coagulated pork blood, and pork ears, among others.
Annatto seeds and banana ketchup-based sauces are also widely used which gives the meat a vibrant orange or red color.
In Singapore, satay is sold by Chinese, Malay and Indian Muslim vendors. It is thought to have originated in Java and brought to Singapore by Muslim traders. Satay is one of the earliest foods that became ubiquitous in Singapore since the 1940s, and was considered a celebratory food. Previously sold on makeshift roadside stalls and pushcarts, concerns over public health and the rapid development of the city led to a major consolidation of satay stalls at Beach Road in the 1950s, which came to be collectively called the "Satay Club". They were moved to the Esplanade Park in the 1960s, where they grew to the point of being constantly listed in tourism guides.
Open only after dark with an open air or "al fresco" dining concept, the Satay Club defined how satay is served in Singapore since then, although they are also found across the island in most hawker stalls, modern food courts, and upscale restaurants at any time of the day. Moved several times around Esplanade Park due to development and land reclamation, the outlets finally left the area permanently to Clarke Quay in the late 1990s to make way for the building of the Esplanade - Theatres on the Bay.
Several competing satay hotspots have since emerged. While the name has been transferred to the Clarke Quay site, several stalls from the original Satay club have moved to Sembawang in the north of the city. The satay stalls at the Lau Pa Sat area are notable for its popularity. "Satay Street" in Boon Tat Street, introduced in 1996, centers around 10 hawkers who sell satay. Served only at night after 7pm when the street is closed to vehicular traffic and the stalls and tables occupy the street, it mimics the open-air dining style of previous establishments. It is said to evoke the nostalgic feeling of Singaporean street food culture from the 1950s and 1960s, and is considered to be the last Satay Club in Singapore. Other notable outlets include Satay by the Bay at the Gardens by the Bay tourist attraction. It is styled after the old Satay Club.
Peanut sauce is used in Singaporean satays, Malay satay is quite similar to Indonesian satay by using kecap manis (sweet soy sauce), while Chinese Hainan satay uses pineapple purée sauce and marinated in five-spice powder. The common types of satay sold in Singapore include Satay Ayam (chicken satay), Satay Lembu (beef satay), Satay Kambing (mutton satay), Satay Perut (beef intestine), and Satay Babat (beef tripe).
Singapore's national carrier, Singapore Airlines, also serves satay to its First and Business Class (previously known as Raffles Class) passengers as an appetiser.
Sathe as it is known in Sri Lanka is a Sri Lankan Malay dish that has become a staple of the country's diet. Sathe is served with peanut and chili sauce. It is sometimes called sate daging by the country's Malay community.
Satay (Thai: สะเต๊ะ, RTGS: sate, pronounced [sā.téʔ]) is a popular dish in Thailand; a key feature of Thai satay is the inclusion of pork as a meat option. Usually served with peanut sauce and achat, Thai satay have various recipes, beyond the popular versions of chicken, beef, and pork: a version made with mussels is called hoi malaeng phu, while vegetarian variants employ soy protein strips or tofu.
Satay can easily be found in virtually any Thai restaurant worldwide. Because Thai cuisine is heavily marketed internationally and has attracted world culinary attention earlier than other Southeast Asian cuisines, there is a widespread misconception abroad that satay originated from Thailand. As a result, it is most frequently associated with Thai food in the Western world. For example, in the United States, satay is said to be one of America's favourite Thai dishes.
The first satay restaurant in Thailand was in front of Chaloem Buri Theater near the Chaloem Buri Intersection in the Yaowarat neighborhood. Now it is on Rama IV Road near Lumphini MRT station and has been for more than 50 years.
Traditionally, satay referred to any grilled skewered meats with various sauces; it is not necessarily served solely with peanut sauce. However, since the most popular variant of satay is chicken satay in peanut sauce (Sate Madura in Indonesia), in modern fusion cuisine the term "satay" has shifted to satay style peanut sauce instead.
For example, the fusion "satay burger" refers to beef hamburger served with so-called "satay sauce", which is mainly a kind of sweet and spicy peanut sauce or often replaced with gloppy peanut butter. The Singapore satay bee hoon is actually rice vermicelli served in peanut sauce. The American-Thai fusion fish fillet in satay sauce also demonstrates the same trend. The fusion French cuisine Cuisses de Grenouilles Poelees au Satay, Chou-fleur Croquant is actually frog legs in peanut sauce. The Indomie instant noodle is also available in satay flavour, which is only the addition of peanut sauce in its packet. In Hong Kong, satay sauce is usually served with instant noodles and stir-fried beef. This dish is most often eaten for breakfast.
Being for a very long time one of the most popular dishes of the national cuisines of Indonesia, satay has taken a fairly prominent place in the culture of these countries. In both Indonesian, the verb menyate (to cook satay) arose, based on the corresponding root stem. In addition to its direct meaning, it also has a figurative meaning — to bring discord, to separate, and the corresponding noun persatean means discord, split, troubles, which is associated with one of the main stages in the preparation of this dish — cutting the product into pieces.
The term persatean is often contrasted with similar sounding term persatuan (unity), to contradict their meanings. The contrasting word play sentence: "Persatuan bukan persatean" was famously emphasised by Mohammad Hatta that uses satay as a metaphor. During his speech, Hatta denotes that persatean — the "unity" among meat pieces in satay — is "forced" upon them by stabbing them with skewer, thus eloquently argue that this type of "satay unity" is not desired, since it is forced upon, not genuine and without the willingness of those who participates.
Satay belongs to the informal ethnocultural symbols of Indonesia. The image of this food appears on Indonesian postage stamps, in tourist brochures, information and advertising materials dedicated to this country, and is often played up by Indonesian participants in various cultural and entertainment events held abroad to create a national flavor. For example, the Indonesian model Aurra Kharisma performed in 2021 at the Miss Grand International beauty pageant in a suit with satay images and a headdress decorated with several bundles of satay meat skewers.  
In some parts of Indonesia, certain types of satay are attributed with different symbolic meanings. Especially Bali stands out: the popular on this island satay lilit — minced sausages stuck on lemongrass stalks — is considered there a symbol of several virtues and benefits at once: male prowess, unity and prosperity. The Balinese attribute the embodiment of the weapons of various Hindu deities and mythological heroes to other local types of satay.
In Bandung, the West Java Governor's office is popularly called Gedung Sate (Indonesian: Satay building) to refer the satay-like pinnacle on its roof.
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