recipe

Chicken Satay: the tantalizing recipe for the traditional Thai appetizer

Total time: 30MIN + marinating time
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4 people
By Cookist
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Ingredients
Boneless skinless Chicken, cut into cubes
2 lbs
Cucumber, cut into small pieces
1
Small onion
1
Vegetable Oil
as much as needed
Bamboo skewers
For the marinade
Small shallots, peeled
6
Stalks lemongrass, white parts only
2
Garlic cloves, peeled
2
Turmeric powder
2 tsp
Coriander powder
1 tsp
Red chili powder
1 tsp
Brown sugar
2 tbsp
Vegetable Oil
3 tbsp
salt to taste
For the peanut sauce
Dry roasted unsalted peanuts
1 cup
Tamarind pulps
1 tbsp
Vegetable Oil
1/4 cup
Water
1 cup
Palm sugar (or brown sugar)
2 1/2 tbsp (or 1 tbsp)
Coriander powder
1 tsp
Sweet soy sauce (Kecap Manis)
1 tbsp
salt to taste
For the spice paste
Red chilies, deseeded and soaked in warm water
8
Garlic cloves, peeled
3
Small shallots, peeled
2
Stalk lemongrass, cut into 3 strips, use only strip at the bottom
1
Piece of galangal, peeled
1/2 inch

Chicken satay is a popular Thai recipe because of its flavorful marinade. This smoky appetizer is seasoned with several aromas, grilled as skewers and then served with a delicious and creamy peanut dipping sauce.

What is Chicken Satay?

Chicken satay is one of the most popular dishes you'll see on a Thai menu, although many countries across Southeast Asia have tasty local versions. This exceptionally flavorful, aromatic appetizer is made from succulent pieces of chicken thigh and leg meat and seasoned to perfection with a delicious array of spices. These char-grilled chicken skewers are usually served with a creamy peanut sauce. The sweet-savory combination is out of this world – it's no wonder people love chicken satay!

What goes well with Chicken Satay

While it makes a fantastic appetizer on its own, chicken satay goes wonderfully with steamed rice or noodles. You could also make a fresh cucumber salad or Asian slaw as a side.

How to make Chicken Satay Marinade

Making the marinade for chicken satay couldn't be easier. Simply put the ingredients into a food processor and blend them.

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What to serve with chicken satay

This tasty appetizer is usually served with peanut sauce and a side of sliced cucumber and onion. The fresh flavors in these vegetables act as a palate cleanser between bites.

Tips for making the best chicken satay ever

  • You can use any cut of chicken you like – just be sure to use boneless, skinless meat and that the pieces are approximately the same size. This will ensure they cook evenly.
  • To get the most intense flavor, marinate the chicken before cooking. Overnight is best, but a few hours will do the trick if you're short on time.
  • Let the bamboo skewers soak in cold water for at least 2 hours. Soaking the skewers helps prevent them from burning when you're grilling the satay.
  • If you don't have a grill, you can also cook chicken satay in a pan or bake them in the oven.

How to make Chicken Satay

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Blend the ingredients for the marinade in a food processor.

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In a large bowl, combine the chicken and the marinade. Mix thoroughly, cover, and refrigerate for a minimum of 6 hours, ideally overnight.

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When you're ready to grill, thread 4 pieces of chicken onto each bamboo skewer.

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Grill the skewers for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Brush with oil while grilling to keep the chicken moist and help char.

How to make Peanut Sauce

  1. Blitz the peanuts in a food processor, then put to the side.
  2. Put tamarind pulps in a small bowl and add ¼ cup of warm water. Leave for 15 to 20 minutes, then squeeze the pulps to extract the juice. Set the juice to the side and dispose of the pulps.
  3. Roughly chop the spice paste ingredients (chilies, garlic, shallot, 1 strip of lemongrass, galangal) then blend them in your food processor. For a smoother paste, add 1-3 tbsp of water.
  4. Heat oil in a pan. Add the spice paste and the 2 strips of lemongrass and gently fry over medium heat until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
  5. Stir in the ground peanuts, water, tamarind juice, salt, sugar, sweet soy sauce, and coriander powder.
    Lower the heat to medium-low and allow the mix to simmer and thicken, about 5 to 10 minutes. Make sure to stir constantly.
  6. Once your sauce has achieved your desired consistency, allow it to cool to room temperature, then serve as a dip for the chicken satay.
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