Thai Style Barbecued Chicken marinated with coconut milk, lemongrass, red chilli, cilantro, shallots, ginger and garlic is a firm favourite form of food enjoyed by both tourists and locals alike almost everywhere in Thailand, from the portable roadside stalls to sports stadiums, festival events and even on a host of beaches.
1 Whole fresh chicken or prepacked fresh chicken pieces
2 Lemongrass stalks (roots trimmed)
6 Garlic cloves (roughly chopped)
1 Small piece fresh ginger (peeled and thinly sliced)
4 Shallots (roughly chopped)
3 Fresh red chillies (seeded and finely chopped)
1/2 Bunch cilantro roots (roughly chopped)
1/2 Cup coconut milk
1 Tablespoon palm sugar
2 Tablespoons *Nam Pla (fish paste)
2 Tablespoons light soy sauce
8 Lime wedges and a small bowl of red chilli paste.
*Nam Pla is a fish sauce made from salted anchovies which are placed into wooden barrels for fermentation to occur. The sauce itself does not actually impart a fishy flavour, but it does accentuate the taste of food.
1) To prepare the marinade, first cut the lower 2 inches of the lemongrass stalks off and roughly chop them up, then place them in a food processor together with the chopped garlic, shallots, cilantro, chillies, sliced ginger and palm sugar. Pour in the coconut milk along with the Nam pla fish paste and soy sauce. Process the mixture until it reaches a smooth consistency.
2) Cut the chicken into 8 or 10 pieces and place in a large bowl or a serving dish. Pour in the marinade and mix well until all the chicken pieces are fully submerged. Cover and leave for at least 4 hours or perhaps even overnight.
3) Prepare your barbecue prior to grilling. If baking in an oven, preheat to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, then arrange the chicken pieces on a rack over a roasting pan.
4) Barbecue or bake for 20 to 30 minutes until cooked and golden
brown. Turn over the pieces and brush with the remaining marinade a few
times on the barbecue or once or twice in the oven. When completely
cooked, transfer the chicken pieces onto a serving platter. Serve hot
with the lime wedges and red chilli paste. Compliment with a fresh salad
of your choice.
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