I first made these lemongrass & ginger coconut chicken skewers for a party many years ago while living in London. They were a massive hit back then, and I made a point to keep them in my party menu recipe archives. However, somewhere along the way I forgot about them until last year when we threw my husband a small get together for his birthday.
Because his birthday is a week before Christmas, it’s always a tricky time to do anything as everyone is busy with Christmas preparations and end of year work parties. So last year rather than try and head out for dinner or drinks, which we thought everyone was probably over by then, we decided to have a few people round and I made a fun finger food menu of mini burgers, swoonut, and these lemongrass & ginger coconut chicken skewers.
To my surprise, the chicken skewers got all the compliments (until the swoonuts came out!), so I promised I’d post the recipe… and it’s only taken me 6 months to do so!
What makes these chicken skewers so delicious is their asian inspired marinade which combines lemongrass, ginger, coconut and coriander. It’s a cinch to make as you simply throw everything into a blender, and you can marinate them for just an hour, all the way up to 24 hours – which makes them a great prep ahead recipe for parties!
If you’re vegetarian or vegan and still reading, this marinade is also delicious on chunky vegetable or tofu skewers. I’ve put a note in the recipe below for how to make either of those substitutions.
For this post I also created a little asian inspired zucchini mint side salad, which turns them into more of a meal. This salad is lovely and fresh and goes perfectly with the creamy coconut skewers. Enjoy!
Lemongrass & Ginger Coconut Chicken Skewers with Zucchini Mint Salad
Makes: approximately 16 skewers (serves 4)
Prep time: 1/2 hour Marinating time: 1 – 24 hours Cook time: 20-30 minutes
2 free range organic chicken breasts (or 250g firm tofu or chunky vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, capsicum etc)
16 wooden or metal skewers
200ml coconut milk
2 lemongrass stalks, finely chopepd
1 large handful fresh coriander
5cm piece fresh ginger, chopped or grated
2 limes, juiced
1/2 small red onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves
1 Tbsp curry powder
4 Tbsp fish sauce (or soy/tamari/coconut aminos sauce)
1/2 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Zucchini Mint Salad
2 zucchini, peeled into strips
1 handful fresh mint
1/2 cup thread coconut
1 green chilli, finely sliced (optional)
2 Tbsp fish sauce (or soy/tamari/coconut aminos sauce)
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 lime, juiced
If using wood skewers, place in a container, cover with cold water and leave to soak for a minimum of 1 hour. This ensures the skewers won’t burn when cooking.
Slice the chicken breast into thin strips lengthways and place in a glass bowl. Set aside while you make the marinade.
To make the marinade, remove the tough outer layers from the lemongrass and finely chop. Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until smooth. Pour the marinade over the chicken and toss together until all the pieces are well coated. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate for a minimum of 1 hour and up to 24.
Preheat over to 180ºC fan bake.
To assemble the skewers, thread one chicken strip onto each skewer and place on a baking tray. When all the chicken is skewered pour over any leftover marinade if desired. Place the chicken skewers into the centre of the oven and cook for approximately 20 minutes – this will depend on your oven. You’re looking for the chicken to be cooked through, i.e. when cut into it should be white with visible fibres.
Note for vegan/vegetarian option: if you’re substituting vegetables or tofu for the chicken, they will only need a couple of hours to marinate, and less cooking time.
While the chicken is cooking assemble the zucchini salad. Peel the zucchini into strips and toss together with the coconut, mint leaves and sliced chilli if using. Combine the dressing ingredients together a small bowl and stir well. Just before serving, pour the dressing over the salad and toss well.
To serve, place a couple of skewers on a plate alongside a generous serving of the zucchini mint salad.
Note on sugar: fish sauce contains sugar so if you’re being strictly sugar free either swap it for soy/tamari sauce or water and add a little more salt.