Grilled Thai Coconut Chicken Skewers Recipe
Thai cuisine is renowned for its vibrant flavors and aromatic dishes. Among the myriad of delightful recipes, Grilled Thai Coconut Chicken Skewers stand out for their tantalizing taste and ease of preparation.
Chicken and Marinade Ingredients:
To start, gather the following:
- Boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- Coconut milk
- Fresh cilantro
- Red chili flakes
- Fish sauce
- Brown sugar
- Lime juice
Skewer Assembly Components:
You’ll also need:
- Skewers (bamboo or metal)
- Red bell peppers
- Red onion
- Pineapple chunks
Preparing the Marinade
Begin by blending the coconut milk, lemongrass, cilantro, garlic, red chili flakes, fish sauce, brown sugar, and lime juice in a food processor. This concoction forms a fragrant marinade that infuses the chicken with rich, Thai-inspired flavors.
Marinating the Chicken
Cut the chicken thighs into uniform pieces and marinate them in the prepared mixture. Let the chicken absorb the flavors for at least an hour in the refrigerator.
Assembling the Skewers
Thread the marinated chicken onto skewers, alternating with colorful additions like bell peppers, onion, and pineapple. This arrangement not only enhances aesthetics but also contributes to the overall taste.
Grilling the Chicken Skewers
Grill the assembled skewers over medium heat, turning occasionally for even cooking. The coconut milk in the marinade caramelizes beautifully, imparting a delightful charred exterior while keeping the chicken tender and juicy inside.
Tips for Perfectly Grilled Skewers
- Soak bamboo skewers in water for at least 30 minutes before threading to prevent burning.
- Maintain medium heat to avoid overcooking the chicken.
- Baste the skewers with excess marinade while grilling for added flavor.
These flavorful skewers pair excellently with steamed jasmine rice or a crisp Thai salad. Drizzle extra lime juice and garnish with fresh cilantro for an extra burst of flavor.
Variations and Customizations
Experiment with different proteins like shrimp or tofu for a diverse culinary experience. Adjust the spice levels according to your preference or add peanut sauce for an additional layer of taste.
Health Benefits of the Recipe
Coconut chicken skewers offer a protein-rich meal infused with the goodness of coconut milk, known for its healthy fats and nutrients like potassium and magnesium.
Thai Cuisine Background and Influence
Thai cuisine’s balance of sweet, sour, spicy, and savory flavors reflects its rich culinary heritage. Coconut chicken skewers encapsulate the essence of Thai cooking, showcasing its aromatic herbs and bold tastes.
Cultural Significance of Coconut Chicken Skewers
These skewers symbolize communal dining and festivity in Thai culture, often served at celebratory gatherings and social events, embodying the spirit of sharing and togetherness.
Grilled Thai Coconut Chicken Skewers present a delightful fusion of flavors that captivate taste buds and reflect the essence of Thai culinary expertise. This simple yet exotic dish brings a taste of Thailand to your table, inviting you to savor its cultural richness.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What’s the key to tender coconut chicken skewers?
Achieving tenderness lies in marinating the chicken adequately and grilling it over medium heat to retain moisture without overcooking.
Can I use alternative proteins for this recipe?
Certainly! Shrimp or tofu make excellent substitutes, each offering a unique taste profile.
How do I adjust the spice levels?
To control the spice, modify the amount of red chili flakes or omit them entirely for a milder version.
Can I prepare these skewers in advance?
Yes, you can marinate the chicken in advance and assemble the skewers before grilling for a convenient meal prep option.
Are there vegetarian alternatives to this recipe?
Absolutely! Substitute chicken with tofu or a medley of vegetables for a delectable vegetarian version of these skewers.
- 1 kg chicken (dark meat preferably)
- 4-5 slices ginger (approx. 2 tablespoons)
- 2 cloves garlic (approx. 1½ tablespoons)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon coconut cream
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
Coconut Cream Glaze:
- 6 tablespoons coconut cream
- 1 ½ tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
Simple Peanut Sauce: (Optional)
- 2 tablespoons coconut cream
- ¼ cup natural peanut butter (unsweetened)
- 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Thai red curry paste
- 2 teaspoon maple syrup (or honey)
- 2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 2-3 tablespoons water (or enough to thin it out to the consistency you like)
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)
- 1 teaspoon chili oil (optional)
- crushed peanuts (optional, sprinkled on top)
Quick & Easy Peanut Sauce (Optional)
- In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients from the peanut sauce ingredient list and mix well.
- Set aside until the chicken skewers are ready to be served.
Marinating & Skewering the Chicken
- If you are using wooden skewers, in a tall cup, add water and soak the back ends (the ends that are not pointy) so they don't burn on the grill.
- Cut the chicken up into 1x1 inch chunks and set it in a bowl
- Using your preferred method (mortar and pestle, food processor, or finely chop by hand) chop the garlic and ginger up as finely as you can and add it to the chicken
- Let it marinade in the bowl for 1-2 hours in the fridge
- Remove them from the fridge 30 minutes before you are about to grill them.
- Skewer the chicken. You may need to skewer some pieces twice so that there are not a lot of loose pieces. The loose pieces usually burn the quickest, so you want the meat to be snug with the skewers. (Also make sure not to run your fingers along the skewers to prevent splinters. Salty marinade splinters are not fun. Use the meat as a shield to run them down the skewers )
Making the Coconut Cream Glaze
- Set the charcoal or gas grill to approximately 500F (260C)
- When the grill has reached the temperature, add the skewers on the grill. You want to cook them over direct heat.
- Brush on the coconut cream glaze and flip them every minute, 2-3 times to get that sweet and sticky caramelized char.
- Serve over a bed of green lettuce with the peanut sauce. (The green lettuce is not just a garnish, but a great way to do mini chicken lettuce wraps with the peanut sauce! )
- If you can't find coconut cream, you can substitute it with coconut milk however it will not have as strong a coconut flavor and the consistency of the marinade may be runnier. If you use coconut milk, try to find a high full fat content coconut milk and try to find a coconut milk with just 2 ingredients in it - coconut extract and water. Any coconut milk that has chemicals (ie. polysorbate80) tastes less coconutty.
- This recipe works great with pork as well. Try switching up the chicken for chunks of pork shoulder!
- When it comes to chicken, I usually prefer dark meat over white meat because it has more flavor albeit less healthier. If you choose to use chicken breast, I find brining it (1 ½ tablespoons of salt with 4 cups of water) for a few hours in a salt water, prior to marinating it makes the chicken breast less dry.
- Chicken skin is added flavour and texture, but it can be removed to make these chicken skewers a bit healthier
- Oyster sauce gives the marinade an extra layer of umami flavor. If you cannot find it, you can substitute it with soy sauce and a pinch of sugar.
- I like to use light soy sauce for as the salt for this recipe. Dark soy is slightly thicker and has a thin syrupy consistency. It gives the chicken its dark brown color. If you cannot find a dark soy sauce, you can substitute it with light soy sauce.
- I like to use honey on the glaze because it is already in syrup form. You can substitute it for sugar, but you will need to melt the sugar in ½ tablespoon of hot water to melt it before mixing it with the coconut cream glaze.
Nutrition InformationYield 1 Serving Size 12
Amount Per ServingCalories 3837Total Fat 207gSaturated Fat 73gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 116gCholesterol 940mgSodium 5169mgCarbohydrates 227gFiber 12gSugar 164gProtein 269g
The information contained herein is subject to change.