Thursday, January 31, 2008

Cambridge Cooks: Poached Chicken w/Peanuts Cambridge Cooks: Poached Chicken w/Peanuts

Photos: Debra Pearlman

When I traveled through southeast Asia, I fell in love with Thai and Indonesian cooking. I've tried to recreate some of the wonderful flavors in this dish.

Cold Poached Chicken Breasts in Peanuts with Curried Yogurt Sauce:


For the chicken:
6 skinless/boneless chicken breast halves
2 cups fresh coconut milk or 1 can (14 oz) unsweetened coconut milk

For the Peanut Coating:
3/4 cups chutney of choice - I like mango
3/4 cup lite mayo or plain low-fat yogurt - or combo of the two
2.5 cups finely chopped dry-roasted peanuts
Sliced mango, papaya or other garnish

For the Curried Yogurt Sauce:
2 tsp minced ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup raisins or currants
1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
2 Tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice
2 tsp. ground coriander
1.5 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsps. ground turmeric
ground salt and cayenne pepper to taste


Chicken: in a skillet
1. Bring coconut milk to boil over Medium heat and immediately reduce heat so coconut milk barely ripples.
2. Simmer breasts uncovered for approx. 12 minutes. Meat should be moist and opaque.
2. Remove from pan and reserve coconut milk. Cool chicken to room temperature

Peanut Coating:
1. Combine chutney and yayo/yogurt in food processor or blender.
2. Puree until smooth

1. Over med-high heat, reduce coconut milk to about 1 cup
2. Remove from heat and add: ginger, garlic & raisins. Set aside to cool.
3. Combine cooled coconut milk, yogurt, lemon/lime juice, coriander, cumin, turmeric, salt and cayenne in food
processor or blender and blend well.
4. Refrigerate until just before serving.

How to Assemble for Serving:

1. 30 minutes before serving, dip chicken into chutney and cover well.
2. Roll in chopped peanuts, patting to cover chicken completely
3. Place on wire rack and chill until serving
4. Spoon yogurt sauce onto each plate and top with 1-2 pieces of chicken
5. Garnich with fresh fruit.

I know it looks like a lot to prepare, but you can make things ahead of time and put it all together just before serving. It's a wonderful dish to serve guests for lunch. In the summer (and summer will come, I promise) this makes a great dinner. Serve with a cold beer or nice white wine.



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