Copyright 1999 by Lynne Rossetto Kasper
Hot and Spicy Peanut Sauce:
Chicken and Marinade:
Peanut sauce can be made a day ahead and kept refrigerated but use it at room temperature. Heat the peanut oil in a 3- to 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Set a metal sieve over a metal bowl. Add the peanuts to the oil and fry about 3 to 5 minutes or until light brown. Turn contents of the pan into the sieve. Let everything cool completely (keep the oil). Crush but don't puree the nuts in a food processor. Set aside.
Take 3 tablespoons of the oil and put it back into the saucepan. Fry the onions, chilies, salt, and pepper in the oil over medium-high heat until golden. Stir in the garlic and cook 20 seconds. Add the sugar and fish sauce, cooking another 10 seconds. Stir in the coconut milk and cook about 3 minutes to blend flavors. Blend in the tamarind or lime juice and taste for spicy balance. Serve at room temperature
Marinate chicken for 1 to 2 hours in the refrigerator. Toss together all the marinade ingredients with the chicken. Cover and chill. Thread on the skewers and grill over medium-hot coals, or about 6 inches from the broiler, about 6 minutes per side, or until chicken is firm. Arrange the skewers of chicken satay on a platter, perhaps on a bed of fresh ginger stalks or greens. Have the peanut sauce in bowls for dipping or spooning over the satay.
Andrea Reusing is the creator of the restaurant Lantern in Chapel Hill, N.C., and author of the book Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes. In this installment of The Key 3, she shares with Lynne Rossetto Kasper the techniques behind three of her favorite recipes: Turnip Soup, Overnight Braised Short Ribs and Tomato Salad.