Grilled Chicken Satay Skewers (Gai Satay)


  • Makes30 skewers
Grilled Chicken Satay Skewers (Gai Satay)

Photo, Michael Graydon and Nikole Herriot.

Toronto chef Nuit Regular changed the way the city’s diners viewed Thai cuisine—and she hopes her new cookbook, Kiin, will do the same for how people cook it at home.

“Today, the ingredients are easy to find online and at Asian supermarkets,” says Regular. And if a certain recipe seems hard, she says, just start with a simpler one: papaya salad or the starter paste for a tom yum soup. “Once you overcome the intimidation of thinking it’s hard, you’re going to find a different joy in Thai food, in making it for yourself.”


  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, toasted

  • 1/4 tsp white peppercorns

  • 2 tbsp thinly sliced lemongrass

  • 1 tbsp 2-in piece fresh turmeric, peeled and thinly sliced

  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt, divided

  • 2 tbsp water

  • 2 tbsp evaporated milk

  • 1 tbsp + 1 1/2 tsp light soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp + 1 1/2 tsp Thai oyster sauce

  • 1 tbsp sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 1 tsp curry powder

  • 1 tsp tapioca starch

  • 1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • 1/2 cup well-shaken coconut milk, for brushing


  • Using a stone mortar and pestle, grind coriander seeds and white peppercorns to a fine powder. Add lemongrass, turmeric and 1 tsp of salt,and pound to a smooth paste. Transfer to a large bowl. Add water, evaporated milk, light soy sauce, oyster sauce, condensed milk, vegetable oil, curry powder, tapioca starch and remaining 1⁄2 tsp salt. Stir well to combine. Add chicken and toss to coat well with the sauce. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 1 hr to marinate.

  • Soak bamboo skewers in cold water for at least 30 min.

  • Thread chicken onto one end of each skewer.

  • Prepare grill for direct cooking over high heat. Brush grill with coconut milk and let sit for 1 min. This will prevent chicken from sticking.

  • Place skewers on grill and cook until they begin to char, 8 to 10 min. Turn and brush the other sides with coconut milk when chicken starts to dry out, cooking for another 6 to 8 min, until a nice char appears.

  • Serve chicken satay skewers with Peanut Sauce and Fast Pickled Cucumber.

The recipes in Chef Nuit Regular's cookbook, Kiin, encompass her cooking life in restaurant kitchens and beyond: some of her restaurants’ biggest hits. The pad Thai noodles she used to make and sell in little plastic baggies for extra income as a student. The birthday curry her mother made every year. Her popular chicken satay skewers — the list goes on (and you're going to want to try them all).

Read more about Chef Nuit Regular and how her growing empire of Thai restaurants got their start.

Excerpted from Kiin by Nuit Regular. Copyright © 2020 by Nuit Regular. Photography copyright © 2020 by Michael Graydon and Nikole Herriott. Published by Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.