Friday, January 17, 2014

Chicken Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce

Yesterday we made some Thai food for dinner.  One of my favorite Thai dishes is Chicken Satay and I love the Spicy Peanut Sauce that is usually served with it.

Even though I love this dish, I did not know much about its origins, so I did a little research.  Satay (or sate) is a dish that originated in Java, Indonesia, but it is also popular in Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines, and Thailand.  The meat (such as chicken, goat, mutton, beef, pork, fish or even tofu) is seasoned, skewered and grilled and served with a sauce.  Turmeric is important when it comes to marinating satay and it gives the dish its yellow color.

The above photo shows Chicken Satay with Peanut Sauce and Sticky Rice that we made a while back.  Ivan made the Sticky Rice by cooking Jasmine Rice in coconut milk.  In the end, the rice is very sticky so that you can use a spoon or an ice cream scoop to shape it nicely and present it on a plate.  Yesterday we did not make rice, but instead I made Thai Steamed Broccoli by steaming cut up broccoli and 2 cloves of minced garlic, then mixing in a bowl with some soy sauce, fish sauce and toasted sesame seeds.  You can see a photo of last night's dinner at the bottom of the post.

Here is the recipe that we used to make Chicken Satay, as well as the recipe for Spicy Peanut Sauce:

Chicken Satay:

- 2 pounds of skinless chicken breasts
- 1 package of wooden skewers

  Satay Marinade:
  - 1/4 cup of minced lemongrass, fresh or frozen (you can substitute 1 tablespoon of grated lemon peel)
  - 2 shallots or 1 small onion, sliced
  - 3 cloves of garlic,
  - 1-2 fresh chilies, sliced, or 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
  - 1 thumb-size piece of galangal or ginger, thinly sliced
  - 1 teaspoon of minced fresh turmeric or 1/2 teaspoon of dried turmeric
  - 3 tablespoons of ground coriander
  - 2 teaspoons of cumin
  - 3 tablespoons of dark soy sauce
  - 4 tablespoons of fish sauce
  - 5-6 tablespoons of brown sugar
  - 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil

- Soak wooden skewers in water while you prepare the meat (to prevent burning)
- Cut chicken into squares and place in a bowl
- Cut up all ingredients well, or use chopper or food processor
- The marinade should taste sweet, spicy and salty (Add more sugar or fish sauce/salt to adjust the taste - or add more chili to make it more spicy)
- Pour the marinade over the meat and stir well to combine (Allow at least 1 hour for marinating, or up to 24 hours)

- When ready to cook, thread meat onto the skewers (fill up to 3/4 of the skewer, leaving the lower half empty so that the person grilling has a "handle" to easily turn the satay during cooking

- Grill the satay on your BBQ, or on an indoor grill, or you can broil in the oven on a broiling pan or baking sheet.  Place satay close beneath the heating element and turn the meat every 5 minutes until cooked.  Depending on how thin your meat is, the satay should cook in 10 to 20 minutes

- Serve with rice and Spicy Peanut Sauce (and in this case Thai Steamed Broccoli)

Spicy Peanut Sauce:
  - 1 1/2 cups of creamy peanut butter
  - 1/2 cup of coconut milk
  - 3 tablespoon of water
  - 3 tablespoon of fresh lime juice
  - 3 tablespoon of soy sauce
  - 1 tablespoon of fish sauce
  - 1 tablespoon of hot sauce
  - 1 tablespoon of minced fresh ginger root
  - 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  - 1/4 cup of chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
  - 3 teaspoons of sesame oil

- In a bowl, mix the peanut butter, coconut milk,water, lime juice, soy sauce, fish sauce, hot sauce, ginger, garlic and sesame oil.  If you want to add cilantro, add to the mix just before serving.

Enjoy!  :  )

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