Singapore Chicken Satay with Pickled Cucumber Salad
Courtesy of Chef Michael Wood of Robin’s Restaurant
You will need sixteen 8-inch bamboo skewers for grilling the chicken. To “julienne” a vegetable, cut it into very fine matchsticks.
2 teaspoons minced garlic
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
2 ½ teaspoons dark soy sauce
2 tablespoons canola oil
3 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
1 ½ teaspoons ground coriander
¾ teaspoon ground turmeric
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, well rinsed and cut into 1 inch squares
1 English cucumber, seeded and thinly sliced
¼ cup thinly sliced Daikon radish (scrubbed)
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
½ cup julienned red onion (approximately ¼ of a small onion)
1 Serrano chile, stemmed, seeded and julienned
1 ¾ tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
1 ¾ tablespoons granulated sugar
½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger
Store-bought peanut dipping sauce, for serving (optional)
In a shallow baking dish or deep bowl, mix together the garlic, salt, soy sauce, oil, brown sugar and spices. Add the chicken pieces and toss with tongs until all the pieces are evenly coated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Soak the skewers in water to cover for 1 hour. Make the salad and sauce: In a large bowl, combine the cucumber and Daikon with 1 teaspoon of the salt. Toss to coat evenly; let stand for 30 minutes, then drain well (do not rinse) and pat dry with absorbent paper or a clean kitchen towel. Fold in the remaining salt, red onion, chile, vinegar, sugar, and ginger. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving, to develop the flavors.
Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let stand while you preheat a gas or charcoal grill for medium-high heat grilling. Place 3 pieces of chicken on each skewer and grill, turning occasionally, until grill-marked, firm to the touch, and completely cooked through to the center. Transfer two skewers to each plate and serve with the cucumber salad and peanut dipping sauce.