Ever wonder how to make authentic Thai chicken satay with peanut sauce? Here you go…
I’m a big fan of Thai chicken satay with peanut sauce. This same recipe could be used with pork or beef too which are also popular at Thai restaurants. Pork is the meat of choice in Thailand with this one but Thai chicken satay with peanut sauce is the most popular here in the US and UK.
Although it isn’t necessary, you should marinate the chicken for at least one day. You could get away with 30 minutes but the longer marination time will get you better and more tasty results.
As the chicken soaks up that incredible marinade, it not only tenderises it but make it much more juicy when cooked.
For this recipe, I used a shop bought Thai red curry paste. You could also use my homemade version here.
Remember, making Thai food is all about tasting as you go so that you get the perfect flavour for you.
This applies especially to the red curry paste, sugar, fish sauce and lime and tamarind water in this Thai chicken satay and peanut sauce recipe.
The following photos of me making this Thai chicken satay with peanut sauce should help you get it just right.
I would like to point out here that you want to get the paste as fine as possible but you will not get a very find paste. This is fine. Pounding the ingredients together really brings out their flavours better than any good processor could.
Making the peanut sauce is really easy! You can do it the day you make the marinade or earlier. It will thicken as it cools. To thin it out again for serving, just warm it up. Sometimes I add a drop of water to do this.
Whether you use smooth or chunky peanut butter is completely up to you. I like my peanut sauce with a bit of crunch. The rest of my family pefers smooth which is what I used for this recipe.
When you are ready to cook, all you need to do is skewer the marinated chicken. Some people prefer longer, flatter pieces of chicken. That’s fine too. I like mine cut into chunks.
- FOR THE MEAT
- 1 kilo (2 lbs) chicken skinless chicken breast or thigh
- 1 tbsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1/2 tsp ground white pepper
- 1 tbsp lemongrass - thinly sliced
- 4 kaffir lime leaves - stems removed and finely chopped
- 1 generous tbsp galangal.
- A pinch of cinnamon powder
- 200ml coconut milk
- 2 tsp palm or white sugar
- 1 tbsp white wine or rice vinegar
- 1 tsp salt
- FOR THE PEANUT SAUCE
- 1 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil
- 2 tbsp Thai red curry paste
- 400ml (1 1/2 cups) thick coconut milk
- 200ml smooth or chunky peanut butter
- 2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
- 1 tbsp sugar
- Juice of one limes
- 2 tbsp tamarind water or more lime juice
- Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and set aside.
- In a dry frying pan, toast the cumin and coriander seeds over medium heat until warm to the touch and fragrant but not yet smoking. Transfer to a pestle and mortar and grind to a smooth powder. Add the ground white pepper.
- Now add the kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass and galangal to the mortar and pound with the cumin, coriander and pepper into a fine paste.
- Add the coconut milk, cinnamon, sugar and salt and stir well to combine.
- Place the cut chicken in a bowl and pour this marinade all over it. Work the marinade into the meat with one of your hands so that is very well coated. Set aside to marinate. For best results, let the meat marinate overnight but this isn't necessary.
- Now make the peanut sauce. Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat and add the red curry paste. Stir it around in the oil for about 30 seconds.
- Add the coconut milk followed by the peanut butter and stir to combine until the peanut butter melts into the coconut milk. Stir in the fish sauce and sugar and check for seasoning adding more fish sauce if you prefer or saltier flavour and/or sugar for a sweeter flavour.
- Add the lime juice and tamarind water. With this the sauce is finished. It will thicken as it cools. To thin it out again, just heat it up.
- Now to cook the chicken. Soak wooden skewers in water for about 30 minutes. Then skewer the meat onto each wooded skewer.
- I prefer to build a fire in one half of my bbq and leave the other half without any coals. This way, you can cook the chicken over the heat without burning the skewers.
- Allow the chicken to cook on one side for about five minutes and the flip the skewers over to cook the other side. Continue turning until the chicken is cooked through and you are happy with the appearance.
- Serve the chicken with warmed peanut sauce. I also like to serve this dish with a pickled cucumber, shallot and chilli chutney.