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Quick and easy chicken and vegetable satay

When I stayed with my childhood best friend during our trip to Australia six months ago, I had a good peruse of her handwritten recipe book (isn’t that what you do when you’re catching up with friends you haven’t seen for years?!). It’s where I ‘stole’ her mum’s delectable recipe for lemon slice and then was delighted to see this recipe sourced from me many years ago.

I used this make this recipe a lot when I was first venturing into the world on my own after university (probably sourced from a magazine), but over the years had forgotten about it. It’s certainly not an authentic satay recipe, but the great thing is it’s packed with flavour without having to marinate the chicken beforehand therefore saving you time. I also love you throw all the sauce ingredients into a pot and stir and that’s it!

quick and easy chicken and vegetable satay

You could easily make this just with chicken, leaving out the vegetables (perhaps have some stir-fried or steamed vegetables on the side instead) or you can reduce the amount of chicken (it is quite a lot) and add more vegetables. Nicholas is a huge fan of satay sauce and will happily eat vegetables he normally refuses to just look at simply because they’re covered in satay sauce! And you really can use pretty much any vegetable you want (I’ve successfully used combinations of cauliflower, carrots, peas, beans, mushrooms, potato, sweet potato, baby corn, peppers/capsicum and broccoli). Now if only I could get Nicholas’ papà to like satay sauce…

QUICK AND EASY CHICKEN AND VEGETABLE SATAY

Prep time: 20-25 mins
Cook time: 25-30 mins
Makes 4-6 adult servings

1/4 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp lime or lemon juice
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 cup hot chicken stock or water
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1kg chicken thigh or breast fillets, sliced or chopped
1/2 cup plain flour
500g assorted vegetables, chopped into stir-fry size

In a medium-sized saucepan combine the peanut butter, honey, lime juice, soy sauce, crushed garlic, curry powder, cumin and stock. Stir over a medium heat and gradually bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly.

While the sauce is simmering, heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan.

Put the flour in a large bowl and stir through the chicken pieces until coated. Tip the chicken into a colander or sieve and shake off the excess flour. (Coating the chicken pieces in flour helps prevent them from overcooking too easily and the flour will also help thicken the sauce later.)

Stir fry the chicken in several batches until browned. Remove from pan and drain on paper towel.

Stir fry the vegetables for 2 minutes ot until they’re just soft. Return the chicken to the pan and add the sauce. Stir fry for about 3 minutes or until heated through.

(If the sauce isn’t thick enough for your liking, add a teaspoon of cornflour or plain flour dissolved in cold water and mix it thoroughly through the sauce, cooking for an extra minute or two.)

Serve with your preferred cooked rice.

quick and easy chicken and vegetable satay

Variations:

  • use thin strips of beef or turkey instead of chicken.
  • substitute the stock or water with coconut milk for a creamier sauce.
  • instead of stir frying the meat and vegetables, thread them onto skewers and cook over a grill, then pour over the satay sauce to serve.
  • for a vegetarian version, replace the chicken with tofu or paneer (a cheese commonly used in Indian cooking that you can actually make yourself!).

Other uses:
Use the sauce as a dipping sauce for sticks of raw vegetables such as celery, capsicum, carrot (perfect for toddlers who love to dip)

Please note: Peanut butter is high in nutrition and a good source of protein, but peanuts are one of the most common food allergies.  If you have a family history of allergies of any kind, you should talk to your GP or health visitor before giving your baby any peanut products. In the UK it’s suggested not to give peanut butter to babies under 6 months; it’s also recommended not to give children below the age of five whole nuts because of the risk of choking (either crush or break them into small pieces).

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