Thursday, June 6, 2019

Malaysian Chicken Satay with Satay Sauce and Nasi Impit

Chicken Satay

2 kg chicken thigh fillets, skin removed (keep aside)
bamboo skewers, soaked for 1 hour

4 lemongrass stalks, white part only, thinly sliced
2 tbsp minced garlic
10 small red Asian shallots or 2 medium Spanish onions, peeled and sliced
½ cup brown sugar
3 tsp salt
125 ml (½ cup) vegetable oil
2 tbsp ground fennel
2 tbsp ground cumin
2 tbsp turmeric powder
2 tbsp minced ginger
1 tbsp ground coriander
Satay prep
Cutting the meat for a satay is very difficult to describe because it’s not a straight slice or dice. What you want to achieve is something like an elongated triangle that is cut against the grain, no more than 2 cm wide, 1 cm thick and 3-4 cm long, irregular in shape but similar in size. Place the chicken pieces in a large zip-lock bag. Add the marinade and push all the air out of the bag, then seal the bag and massage the meat through the bag, making sure every piece of meat is coated with the marinade. Refrigerate for at least 5 hours or overnight.

Following the length of each piece of meat, thread 3-4 pieces on each soaked bamboo skewer, making sure each piece is sitting flatly. The end appearance of each skewer will be a thin thread of meat which basically has 2 flat sides, making the satay easy to turn and cook. Cook the satay skewers on a preheated charcoal grill or barbecue flat plate for 2-3 minutes or until the meat is slightly charred and cooked through. For basting mix ½ cup coconut milk with 2 tbsp vegetable oil and baste on the chicken while grilling, so your satay is most and not dry…if there is something I hate is dry satay.

I would make the pressed rice first of you are going to add them to your tray of condiments along with sliced cucumber and chopped Red Onions.


Pressed Rice
400 g (2 cups) jasmine rice, washed and drained
1 tsp salt

To make the pressed rice, combine the rice, salt and 1 litre of water in a saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat. Simmer for 10 minutes, then cover and simmer on medium heat for another 10 minutes. Turn the heat off and stand, covered, for another 15 minutes. Note that the rice is deliberately mushy, so it can be pressed easily. Spread the rice evenly into a foil-lined, 20 cm square baking tin, cover with foil, then press with an oven mitt to compress the rice evenly. Allow to cool completely to room temperature before cutting into 2 cm cubes.

Satay Sauce

Peanut sauce
20 long dried red chillies
1 tsp ginger
2 stalks lemongrass, inner white part only, thinly sliced
2 tsp minced garlic
1 cup chopped shallots or onions
200 ml vegetable oil
1-2 tbsp tamarind paste
¼ cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt, plus extra to taste
500 g, roasted and salted peanuts (I buy the planters dry roasted ones) processed in a food processor.
Break the dried chillies in half and shake out the seeds. Place them in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then simmer over low heat for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, cover and stand for 15 minutes. Place the chillies and soaking water, galangal, lemongrass, garlic and shallots in a blender and process until smooth. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a medium-large heavy based saucepan over medium heat. Add the blended spice paste, then cook, stirring continuously to prevent the bottom from catching and cook for 5-8 minutes or until there is very little steam rising from the sauce. At this stage, the oil will have split from the spice paste, caramelising into a lovely dark red and developing a beautiful fragrance. Add 1 litre of water and bring to the boil. Add the tamarind, sugar, salt and crushed peanuts. Bring to boil again, then remove from heat and set aside until required.

You can make a double batch of the satay sauce because you can use the same sauce for the gado gado.

Gado gado is a salad with a satay sauce dressing and blanched vegetables, so the choice is up to you what vegetable you want to use.
If available I would use long beans (French beans as substitute), bean sprouts, julienned carrots and cucumber, boiled potatoes (diced) and boiled eggs (cut into halves per serving), blanched kangkung  (or water hyacinth is a nice leafy green addition), English spinach could be a substitute.

Note :

If you are not pressed for time. you can try cooking the peanut sauce in a slow cooker to reduce the constant stirringYou can saute your spice paste on the stove top and then transfer to the slow cooker...use the auto setting and add the blended roasted peanuts when the soup starts to simmer....leave for 4 hours. You can tell the sauce is ready when the oil is split and starts to appear on the top layer of the sauce.

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