Chef Nuit Regular’s grilled Thai turkey satay skewers

A great recipe to take your grilling game to new heights from the chef-owner of Toronto's Pai and Kiin

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August may be right around the corner, but there’s still plenty of time left to enjoy your food and drink al fresco over the next month or two. Since outdoor eats often involves firing up the barbecue, it pays to have a great grilling recipe at the ready. 

This recipe from renowned Toronto-based chef Nuit Regular is a flavourful play on one of Pai’s popular Gai Satay starter skewers. While both recipes incorporate Regular’s signature homemade peanut sauce, instead of using chicken and cucumber dressing, for this recipe Regular opts for turkey and a coriander, lemongrass, and cilantro-based marinade.

Satay marinade

1 tbsp coriander seeds, toasted
¼ cup lemongrass, thinly sliced
¼ cup cilantro stems, thinly sliced
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp turmeric powder
2 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp tapioca starch
1 1⁄2 tsp sea salt
1⁄4 tsp ground white pepper
2 tbsp evaporated milk
1 tbsp + 1 1⁄2 tsp thin soy sauce
1 tbsp + 1 1⁄2 tsp Thai oyster sauce
1 tbsp sweetened condensed milk
1⁄4 cup canola or vegetable oil, plus extra for grilling
1 1⁄2 lbs boneless turkey breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1⁄2 cup well-shaken coconut milk, for brushing
peanut sauce (below), for serving
12 6-inch bamboo skewers

In a mini food processor, pulse the coriander seeds until coarsely ground. Add the lemongrass, cilantro stem, and water and pulse until finely chopped.

Transfer mixture to a large bowl and add the remaining satay marinade ingredients. Stir to combine well. Add the turkey pieces and toss to coat well with the sauce. Make sure the turkey is fully coated. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to marinate for at least 1 hour to overnight.

Soak 12 (6-inch) bamboo skewers in cold water for at least 30 minutes.

Thread the marinated turkey onto one half of each skewer and set aside.

Prepare the grill for direct cooking over high heat. Brush the grill with a little extra oil to prevent the turkey skewers from sticking to the grill.

Place the turkey skewers on the grill and cook until it begins to char, about 8 to 10 minutes. Turn and brush the other side with coconut milk when the turkey starts to dry out, cooking for another 6 to 8 minutes, until a nice char appears and the internal temperature reaches 165°F.

Serve with peanut sauce.

Peanut sauce and final steps

1 tbsp red curry paste
1 tbsp curry powder
1 cup coconut milk
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp light soy sauce
1⁄2 tsp Thai fish sauce
3⁄4 cup chunky peanut butter

In a small bowl, add the curry paste and curry powder. Stir to combine well and set aside.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Add the curry paste mixture and stir to combine well. Simmer for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Turn off the heat. Add the brown sugar, thin soy sauce, and fish sauce and stir until sugar is dissolved. Add the peanut butter and stir to combine well.

Serve with satay skewers.

Makes 10-12 skewers
Prep Time:
10 minutes + overnight marinating + 30 minutes soaking time
Cook Time:
18 minutes