Grilled Coconut-Lime Chicken with Peanut Sauce (Chicken Satay)

8-10 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast and/or thigh meat

1 can coconut milk
1/4 c soy sauce
3 T freshly grated ginger
4 minced garlic cloves
1 T sriracha (thai chilli sauce) could also use sambal oelek/ulek
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
zest and juice of 2 limes
2 T sesame seed oil
1/3 C vegetable oil
2 T of curry spice mix, recipe below
salt to taste, if needed

1/2 bunch cilantro chopped as a garnish

Marinate the thigh and breast pieces for 1-2 days in the fridge. I like to use all thigh meat (because it’s juicier and more flavourful) that has been boned and skinned so it’s really easy to just put it right into the marinade with no prep.

Preheat your grill. Once hot, scrape off any crud, and oil well.  Once the chicken has finished marinated, remove each thigh and cut in half lengthwise. Skewer as many strips you can fit on your skewers (I did 3). Grill until just done on medium-high heat. During the last couple minutes of grilling, sprinkle the chicken with just a little bit of garam masala (recipe below) or the curry spice mixture if you prefer.

Once all the chicken is done, place on a large platter, and sprinkle with the chopped cilantro. Serve with the peanut sauce to dip.

Peanut Sauce:
1 1/2 C crunchy all-natural peanut butter (nothing in the ingredients but peanuts and salt) or 2 c roasted peanuts, crushed
zest and juice of 3 limes, extra lime juice if needed
2 T freshly grated ginger
1/2+ C dark soy sauce
1/3 C brown sugar
2-3 finely minced garlic cloves
sriracha/sambal oelek to taste (I like mine quite spicy)
2-3 t sesame oil
2 t curry spice mix, recipe below
coconut milk as needed until desired consistency

Mix all together. The liquids are in variable measure because depending on what kind of peanut butter you use, how oily it is, and whether you grind your peanuts freshly, the amount you’ll need to add in will change. If using peanuts instead of peanut butter, blend 3/4 of your peanuts in a food processor until it turns to peanut butter. Add the remainder of the crushed peanuts, and pulse a few times to mix them in, but retain the crunchy texture. Also depending on how limey and spicy you want it, change the amounts of lime juice and sriracha accordingly. In fact, feel free to adjust all amounts of all ingredients according to your taste.

Spice mix recipes

Curry spice mix:
2 t cumin seeds
1 1/2 t coriander seeds
2 t fenugreek seeds
3 dried bay leaves
1/2 t celery seeds
1 t ground turmeric

Garam Masala:
8-12 green cardamom pods (or 1 1/2-2 t ground cardamom)
1 T cloves
1 T black peppercorns
25g/1 oz coriander seeds
25g/1 oz cumin seeds
4 short cinnamon sticks
1/4 pod whole nutmeg (or 3/4 t ground)
3 star anise pods

Toast the whole spices in a small, DRY sauté pan over low heat until fragrant and warm, you should be able to just smell the spices, but be very careful not to burn them. Grind them in a coffee grinder you dedicate solely to grinding spices. Add in any pre-ground spices and grind to mix in.


6 thoughts on “Grilled Coconut-Lime Chicken with Peanut Sauce (Chicken Satay)

  1. I love chicken satay. Looking at my window the black cloud formed on the sky, I’m thinking what a perfect dinner tonight “Satay!”.

  2. This is going to prove how beginner I am at cooking, but Craig, could I just Grill the chicken whole and serve it that way instead with some Jasmine ricce or something? Treat it more like a curry?

    • Yeah, you could definitely do that. I’d cut the backbone out of the chicken, marinate it for a couple days, then grill it on both sides (splayed open). By cutting out the backbone you create a flatter surface to grill which means a shorter cooking time and meat that is cooked evenly. I usually serve this with my Indian rice.

      • fabulous, thanks for the advice. I think this is what we are making tonight, i will tell you how it goes

  3. Pingback: Garam Masala « foodnography

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