There comes a time a in a girl’s culinary life when she just has to take the plunge. Being the neurotic cook that I am, I am too stubborn to give up on a recipe once I’ve decided to take that plunge.
When I look back at the special meals we shared on festive holidays, one dish that is always fondly remembered is Satay. Satay is a Malaysian version of the kabab. Skewered pieces of meat are marinated in aromatic flavours and grilled to perfection. The highlight of this dish however, is the spicy peanut dipping sauce.
For those of you who know me, also know that I’ll go to pretty much any lenght to duplicate my favourite flavours but at the same time, struggle to create a much easier and simpler version of the recipe in question. Conquering the Satay was one such daunting task. Never having been witness to its cooking process, all I had to help me with were the familiar flavours and a bunch of off-the-web recipes. The taste was still fresh in my mind, the recipes on the other hand, I winced at. Some I thought had wierd ingredients, most others, had those which I had never heard or seen, let alone be able to find around me.
So, as always, I turned to my ever-growing spice cupboard, and most importantly intuition. They say, a woman has a sixth sense when it comes to just knowing things, something of a hunch. I’m happy to note that mine often gives me the answers I seek. Re-creating the Satay was a breeze. What hurt my back though, was the peanut sauce. Until I threw caution to the wind and just followed my instinct. Works every time!
CHICKEN SATAY WITH SPICY PEANUT SAUCE
SKEWERED CHICKEN STRIPS WITH A SPICY PEANUT-BASED SAUCE
Marination Time: 1-2 hrs, Prep time: 15 min, Cooking time: 25 min | Serves: 4Â Â Â for the Satay
8-10 boneless chicken strips, or 2 chicken breasts cut into strips 1 tbsp garlic, finely chopped 1 tbsp ginger, finely chopped 2 tbsp green onions, finely chopped 1/2 tsp black pepper Â 1/4 tsp white pepper 1 tsp pure sesame oil 1tsp light cooking oil 2 tbsp honey 2 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp lime juice salt, to taste
MARINATE chicken pieces with all the ingredients, for 1-2 hours in the fridge.
GRILL on skewers till tender and done.
for the Spicy Peanut Sauce
1 cup soomth peanut butter 1 small onion, finely chopped 1 tbsp Thai red chillies, finely chopped 1 tbsp garlic, finely chopped Â 1/2 tsp red chili powder 2 tbsp lime juice 1 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp pure sesame oil salt, to taste
HEAT oil in a non-stick pan and fry onions, garlic and chillies till till tender and fragrant.
ADD rest of the ingredients and cook by constant stirring till it starts to give out oil. If peanut butter begins to thicken, thin it out by adding a little water.
SERVE warm Satay with room-temperature sauce and slices of cool cucumber.