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Lemongrass Chicken Satay

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Lemongrass chicken satay has all the complex flavors of Thailand, sweet, sour salty and spicy. Grill these flavorful chicken satay skewers over hot coals and serve with a spicy peanut sauce. This recipe is a meal in itself with a side of rice and a small salad or served in smaller portions as an appetizer.

Lemongrass Chicken Satay

We grilled up this lemongrass chicken satay recently when we had an unusual four-day blessing of nice sunny weather.  It was one of our first BBQ cookouts of the year and the lemongrass chicken satay was served with spicy peanut sauce and fluffy jasmine rice.

What is Satay?

Satay, is deliciously yummy grilled food on a stick!  For all the Thai food lovers in and around the Seattle area, I recommend a visit to the Asian restaurant, Wild Ginger for a feast extraordinaire, especially if you like satay.    

Meat skewered onto a stick and grilled over hot charcoal coals is usually served with a dipping sauce and our spicy Thai peanut sauce is delightful with its complex flavors enhancing the grilled chicken.

When we lived in the Philippines their version of this popular street food could be found on any street corner.  Satay is easy to make, it can be marinated overnight for maximum flavor and as the meat is in small chunks on a stick it grills up quickly. 

Lemongrass Chicken Satay  

How to make Lemongrass Chicken Satay:

Chicken thighs are tender and so flavorful for these chicken satay skewers.  Chicken breast tenders are also a great choice for a lower calories version.    The chicken is cut into strips and marinated in a flavor-rich mix of lemongrass, ginger, garlic, honey, soy sauce and spices.  The chicken is threaded on wooden bamboo skewers and grilled over hot coals. 

  • First, In a small dish, combine the ingredients for the marinade
  • Prepare the chicken by flattening each thigh with a meat pounder to the same thickness.
  • Cut the pounded chicken into 2-inch strips and add to an 8×8 dish.
  • Pour the marinade over the chicken, turning to coat both sides with the marinade. 
  • Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  • Soak the wooden skewers in cold water for 30 minutes to keep them from burning during the grilling process.
  • Lift a chicken strip out of the marinade, allowing the marinade to drip off.  
  • Thread the chicken strip onto the wooden skewer, adding several strips. 
  • Place the completed skewer on a separate plate. Repeat with each wooden skewer dividing the chicken evenly between the skewers. 
  • Prepare your grill with enough coals to maintain a medium-heat.   
  • When the coals are ready, place the skewers on the grill and cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until they lift off easily. 
  • Using tongs, turn the skewers and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until the chicken is opaque throughout.

Can this Chicken Satay be cooked indoors?

Yes, it can be grilled over a gas BBQ, stove-top grill or in the oven but I would surely miss the smokey taste of the outdoor charcoal grill.

Lemongrass Chicken Satay

How to make the Spicy Peanut Sauce:

This peanut sauce is a copy-cat version of one from our local deli.  They have an exclusive, non-sharable recipe that is made in-house but the ingredients are listed on the container.   We have been tinkering around adding a bit of this and a bit of that and have reached a delicious blend of flavors.

  • Place one cup of the peanuts into a blender or food processor.
  • Process on high until smooth. 
  • If you want the sauce thinner, drizzle in more water just a teaspoon at a time.
  • Course-grind 1/4 cup of peanuts separately and stir into the peanut sauce giving it a grainy consistency.

This is a delicious dipping sauce for the lemongrass chicken satay skewers.  Adjust the spicy heat to suit your specific taste.  If you are short on time you can always use your favorite commercially-made spicy peanut sauce.

 

Lemongrass Chicken Satay

SOME OTHER RECIPES WE ARE SURE YOU WILL LOVE:

  • Beef Pho  Beef pho is a soup layered with hot noodles, green scallions, cilantro and thin slices of beef.  The key to a great pho is the rich, hot beef broth. Garnished with Thai basil, mint, cilantro jalapeno peppers and lime wedges.
  • Thai Spicy Shrimp Rice Bowl   A one-dish meal with jumbo shrimp, sautéed veggies, mango and a spicy peanut sauce.  Served over fragrant jasmine rice. 
  •  Sake-Red Miso Glazed Sabelfish with Wasabi Emulsion   Sablefish is a delicate, fatty fish and the sweetness of the saki-miso marinade is a perfect balance that is complimented with the wasabi emulsion.

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Lemongrass Chicken Satay

Lemongrass Chicken Satay

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Lemongrass chicken satay has all the complex flavors of Thailand, sweet, sour salty and spicy. Grilled over hot coals or stove-top grill pan and served with a spicy peanut sauce. This recipe can be a meal in itself with a side of rice and a small salad or served in smaller portions as an appetizer.

Ingredients

For the Marinade:

  • 1 stalk lemongrass, white part only, peeled and chopped finely
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger root
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon tahini paste
  • 2 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground Chinese five-spice
  • pinch of cayenne red pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)

For the chicken Skewers

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 8 wooden skewers
  • Vegetable oil for basting during grilling
  • Fresh Limes and Thai basil for garnish

For Peanut Sauce

Instructions

For the Marinade with Chicken:

  1. In a small dish, combine the marinade ingredients and whisk to combine thoroughly. Set aside.

For the Chicken:

  1. Use a meat pounder or rolling pin to flatten any thick parts of the chicken so the meat is close to the same thickness.
  2. Cut the chicken into 2-inch strips, add them to a shallow dish and pour the marinade over them, turning to coat both sides with the marinade. Cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4-5 hours, overnight if possible.

For the Thai Peanut Sauce:

  1. Make our spicy peanut sauce recipe (or use a storebought sauce)
  2. When ready to cook the chicken satay:
  3. Soak the wooden skewers in cold water for 30 minutes to keep them from burning during the grilling process.

To Cook the Chicken Satay:

  1. Lift a chicken strip out of the marinade, allowing the marinade to drip off, thread the meat onto the wooden skewer, adding several strips. Place the completed skewer on a separate plate. Repeat with each wooden skewer dividing the chicken evenly between the skewers.
  2. Prepare your grill with enough coals to maintain a medium-heat. When the coals are ready, baste the chicken lightly with oil and place the skewers on the grill and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until lightly charred and lift off the grill easily. Using tongs, turn the skewers and cook for an additional 3 to 4 minutes or until the chicken is again lightly charred and opaque throughout.
  3. Serve hot or room temperature, garnished with lime wedges, fresh basil, Thai peanut sauce and hot jasmine rice

Notes

  • Pork or beef can be substituted for the chicken.
  • Soaking the wooden skewers will keep them from catching fire during the grilling.
  • There will be more than enough peanut sauce. Place any remaining sauce in a covered container and refrigerate. It will keep for 5-7 days.
  • The peanut sauce is not calculated in the nutrition information.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 2 sticks
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 382Total Fat: 12.7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 15gCholesterol: 138mgSodium: 1092mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 3gSugar: 21gProtein: 32g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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Harriet Berholtz

Sunday 15th of May 2016

This looks delicious!! I definitely want to try and make this for myself!

Pat

Sunday 15th of May 2016

Thanks, Harriet :) I hope you enjoy it....they make really nice appetizers as well, with small picks and about 1/3 the chicken pieces. Enjoy!

Sabrina

Sunday 15th of May 2016

Wow, the marinade and sauce sound fantastic in this recipe!

Pat

Sunday 15th of May 2016

Thank you, Sabrina.....It has great flavor :)

John/Kitchen Riffs

Wednesday 11th of May 2016

Wow, you've packed a ton of flavor in this dish! Really nice marinade, and the peanut sauce looks first rate. Fun dish -- thanks.

Pat

Wednesday 11th of May 2016

Thanks, John :) This lemongrass chicken satay is sooooo good.

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