Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Chicken Satay Inspired Chicken

My earliest memory of Chicken Satay is when I was just a wee little lad living in Malaysia and my family would frequent a nearby restaurant (I'm assuming Thai?) and we  would always order Chicken Satay for an appetizer. That was some chicken I loved then and still like now. Grilled chicken on skewers dipped into a sweet and savory cucumber sauce, yumm. I have yet to have really good Chicken Satay anywhere, but I suppose that's because the memory in my head of the chicken is grander than it actually was. That and the fact that I rarely order it when I go to restaurants. I, myself, have never made chicken satay. My mother attempted to make it once, it came out pretty good, but we failed to make the cucumber sauce to go along with it.

So I was looking for some sort of grilled chicken breast recipe to make when I came across this recipe for chicken satay. Now, I must say that this recipe is far from authentic chicken satay. Why, you may ask? Well, because the ingredients call for curry powder and peanut butter. Call me crazy, but neither are ingredients used in Asia, at least not to make traditional Asian cuisine. But the ingredients sounded good and I had them on hand so I decided to make it, I just knew that it wasn't going to be authentic Chicken Satay.

I don't like using the outside grill when it's just me and Bambino at home because it's too much to watch her and the scathing hot grill. So I decided to use the grill pan instead. I did some research on how to properly use a grill pan to prepare chicken and came across this great blog post about indoor grilling. It calls to grill the chicken at high heat on a grill pan and then bake it in the oven until the chicken is cooked through, genius!

I made the chicken along with a simple vegetable fried rice and it came out fantastic! Hubby enjoyed it, as seen by the heaping helping of chicken he piled on top of the rice in the photo above. Bambino also enjoyed it. I cut up the chicken into small pieces and mixed it into the rice. I really liked it that way as well!

Click here for the original recipe.

5 chicken breasts thinly sliced
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup lemon or lime juice (I used lime because it's all I had on hand)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons curry powder
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (I omitted since Bambino ate it)

1. Mix together peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, brown sugar, curry powder, garlic and hot pepper sauce. Pour over chicken breasts and marinade overnight in fridge.

2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Heat grill pan to high heat. Grease with cooking spray. Place chicken on grill and cook for 1 1/2 minutes per side, until grill marks are seen. Place chicken in greased casserole dish. (You will probably have to do this in batches.)

3. Once all of chicken is in casserole dish, pour remaining marinade over chicken. (I was concerned about putting the raw chicken juice over the chicken, but the chicken is still raw on the inside and both will cook in the oven.) Place in oven and cook for 10-12 minutes per side, until an instant read thermometer reads 165 degrees.

4. Cool and serve over fried rice, rice or just eat alone.

Amateur Cooking Difficulty Scale: 5
There are numerous steps to this dish. You have to clean the chicken, marinade the chicken, grill the chicken and then bake it, but it comes out pretty good! It's a delightful change to the usual chicken dishes I make. Perhaps next time I will attempt the cucumber dip to go along with it!

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