After a week of rain, we are finally seeing the sun and some beautiful weather, and that brings up thoughts of lighter, fresher foods, and meals cooked on the grill. Every spring and summer our diets undergo a change. Fresh local produce begins to flood the market, meals are cooked and eaten outdoors, and we want to spend more time outside than in the kitchen so things need to come together quickly.
Yesterday was one of those days: busy, beautiful weather, kids playing outside after school, and not wanting to spend a great deal of time preparing dinner. Fortunately, I have one or two ‘go-to’ easy recipes that are perfect for these types of days, and so yesterdays dinner was chicken satays with a no-cook Thai peanut sauce. By taking just 20 minutes in the morning to put chicken in a marinade, you can fire up the grill and have an easy, tasty dinner on the table in under 30 minutes at the end of the day.
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
2 tbsp peanut butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp tamari sauce
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
Cut chicken into large chunks or into long, thin strips (your preference). Place in a large Ziploc bag and set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients and combine. Pour this over the chicken and massage the bag to make sure each piece of chicken is coated with the marinade. Place in the fridge for several hours or as long as overnight.
Note: If you are using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for a few hours before grilling.
When you are ready to cook the chicken, thread the chicken onto the skewers and discard any remaining marinade. Preheat the grill to med-high. Cook the satays on the grill until cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side.
Arrange the satays on a plate or platter and serve with Thai peanut sauce (recipe below). I served ours last night on a bed of quinoa and broccoli but these are great alone as an appetizer with the sauce served on the side, or on a bed of rice.
Thai Peanut Dressing
While I use a few different variations on a basic Thai peanut sauce recipe that I’ve used for years, all of them are cooked sauces. Last night I wanted to try something else and found this one from Our Best Bites. It’s a fantastic no-cook sauce that comes together quickly in a blender or food processor that can be used for salads or as a vegetable dip. I made it 2 hours in advance so the flavours had time to develop and it was a big hit with everyone at the table, young and old.