Imagine the meltiest satay sauce, bursting with peanuts and packing a coconut punch. Then see it oozing over tenderly grilled skewered chicken, collecting into a pool of creamy nutty goodness and slowly seeping into a delightful dome of fragrant rice. Served with curling carrot ribbons, chopped spring onions and baby asparagus to balance all that gooey sauce. Heaven on a plate, non?
Well I didn’t have to imagine this last night because that’s what I had for dinner. Chef Shaw makes a mean chicken satay and I’m a willing culinary cavy. First, the chicken is marinated then griddled in a potent spice mix of tumeric, cumin, garlic, coriander, and sesame oil, providing colour, flavour and earthiness. This makes the meat snowy soft and stained a delicious clay colour, tearing away from the skewer like candyfloss from a stick.
The satay sauce is a devilish mix of red curry paste, coconut milk, groudnnut oil, water, sugar and the all important peanut butter (crunchy, naturally) and slowly simmered over a mid heat. The rice teeters between fluffiness and stickiness on the delicate tightrope of your tastebuds. And those vegetables- a sensory smack in the mouth of flavour- provide that all important contrast to the creamy satay, flash fried with a light soy glaze.
There’s only one major flaw to this dish: no matter how much you make, it’s never enough. A reasonably quick meal, we made this mid week in under thirty minutes, and got everything but the red curry paste from our local Tesco for under a tenner. The perfect dish for an informal dinner, it’s fresh, looks great and tastes delicious. If only everyone could have a Chef Shaw at hand (you can’t, he’s mine).