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Chicken Satay, 'Satay Gai'Featured

Chicken Satay, 'Satay Gai'

Satay of course is originally an Indonesian/Malay dish, but it has been in Southern Thailand for a very long time.

Here we demonstrate two versions, Version 1 is our favorite and one you can make in your kitchen without a charcoal grill. The chicken in both versions is prepared as you'd find in Thailand -- using thin strips, instead of thick cuts that restaurants outside of Thailand often serve for satay.

You can of course also make the same recipe as beef satay, pork satay, or prawn satay (large prawns usually deheaded and the skewer threaded lengthwise down the body).


For 4 Person(s)

Marinade Ingredients Version 1

Nam jim satay Peanut Sauce Ingredients Version 1

Marinade Ingredients Version 2

  • 1 Teaspoon Coriander Seed
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin Seed
  • 1 Tablespoon Chopped Garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Fresh Grated Ginger
  • 1 Pound Chicken Breasts, Skinned, boned, and cut into bite sized pieces.
  • 2 Tablespoons Fish Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon Curry Powder
  • Pinch Turmeric Powder (as only a colorant, so very little!)
  • 8 Tablespoons Coconut Milk
  • 3 Tablespoons Palm Sugar

Nam jim satay Peanut Sauce Ingredients Version 2

Ingredients For A jad cucumber sauce

Buy ingredients for this Recipe

Method for Chicken Satay, 'Satay Gai'

Marinade Method - Version 1

Mix coconut milk, turmeric powder, sugar and soy sauce in a bowl, add chicken, marinade for 1 hour. You can thread the chicken onto satay sticks now, or cook the chicken first and thread it onto the sticks later (as we did). Cook the chicken over low heat, using all the marinade to baste as it cooks.

Peanut Sauce Method - Version 1

Pound the fried red onion in a mortar and pestle, set aside. Pound peanuts in a mortar and pestle, and set aside.

In a saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, and fry red curry paste together with the pounded red onion and chile powder over medium heat, until fragrant. Add peanut, palm sugar, tamarind, salt, and stir. Add coconut milk, reduce heat, and keep at a high simmer until oil rises (this oil comes from the coconut milk, and it will look distinctive as shown in photo).

Serve as shown, with chicken on skewers accompanied by a bowl of satay sauce, and a bowl of ajad (see below).

Marinade Method - Version 2

Beat the chicken flat, using the flat of the blade of a heavy cleaver or a meat tenderizing mallet. You can also use a rolling pin.

The coriander and cumin are toasted then crushed in a mortar and pestle. The ingredients are then combined to form a marinade, and the chicken is marinated overnight. The pieces of chicken are then threaded on the satay sticks, loosely folding them in half and piercing through the folded meat to form a loose gather.

The completed sticks are then grilled, broiled or barbequed on fairly high heat (they taste best done over charcoal, as they absorb the smoke). Turn them regularly and brush them liberally with the remaining marinade. Cooking should take between 5 and 10 minutes depending on the heat of your cooker.

Peanut Sauce Method - Version 2

First grind or crush the peanuts to a fairly fine powder. Then combine them with the remaining ingredients (except the lime juice), to form a smooth sauce. If the sauce is too thick, you can thin it with a littlechicken stock. Now add the lime juice, tasting as you progress to check the balance of flavors is correct.

Note use red curry paste with beef or pork satay, massaman (as above) with chicken. If you are doing shrimp satay then use half the quantity of massaman paste.

A Jad Sauce

Combine the ingredients, and leave to stand overnight. Alternatively, you can gently heat the vinegar, add 4 tablespoons water, let it cool, then pour that over the other ingredients and serve right away.

Each diner should have a small bowl of nam jim and a small bowl of a jad. However the satay themselves are normally served "communally". We like to eat steamed jasmine rice that has a few spoonfulls of the Peanut Sauce on top.


Overall Rating (18)

4 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    Just got back from Bangkok, had chicken satay everywhere!

  • Jim Ball

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    I made this recipe tonight and doubled my enjoyment by grilling the chicken on my new Street Vendor Satay Grill. :-) I've made the Pork Satay before, but grilled it on my Weber gas grill. (nowhere near as much fun as using this charcoal Satay Grill.)

  • Jules G

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    Can't imagine any meat made into Satay would be anything but delicious. I use the satay packets and cartooned coconut milk. Fresh jasmine rice. Even better as leftovers. Huge fan. I am Irish, English and scot.

  • Anonymous

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    I made this using extra firm tofu and it was delicious. Thanks!

  • Sharon Nettles

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    Love this recipe -- we used to enjoy chicken satay at a little Thai restaurant in our neighborhood in New York City (it closed years ago) and this is the closest to it that I have ever found. Thank you!

  • ben

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    We liked this recipe a lot. The chicken is very good. Though my partner found it a bit mild for her taste, I really enjoyed it - as much as the restaurant. The ajad is excellent and we both thought it gave the chicken some complexity.

  • katieevans

    Rated 4 out of 5 stars

    This was seriously SO good. I doubled the sauce and didnt put any broth and added chili pepper flakes to both the sauce and the noodle mixture. Also increased the garlic. Served with steamed edamame for appetizer and bananas foster for dessert. Amazing, thanks!!

  • Mark

    I like this recipe. Recipes with chicken are often very good.

  • Martina Lewis

    I love eating chicken. Your chicken recipe is too good and delicious. I had just tried this in my kitchen and everybody in my home loved it very much.

  • Steve Hecht

    The word "marinade" is a noun. "Marinate" with a T is a verb. Marinade is the stuff we use to marinate something. If we soak ingredients in something for a while, we are marinating them, with a T.


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