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Thai Grilled Chicken: Smoked Soy-Honey-Rum Cornish Game Hens

Thai Grilled Chicken - Smoked Cornished Game Hens by
About two years ago, a reader who was about to move back to his native Australia, wrote me lamenting a life without the rotisserie chicken which he had enjoyed five times a week for the past six years of living in Bangkok. I can commiserate as I, too, am an unabashed fan of this famous Bangkok-based franchise (whose name in English rhymes with knife-scar chicken). So I’ve been trying to clone some of its flagship products for the past two years. So far, I’ve had success with a couple of those products. But there’s one that has still proven elusive. And though I think I’m getting warmer, my path so far has been dotted with numerous failures.

But here’s the thing about this project: even the failures taste good. One failure in particular — this one — has become a favorite of mine. I hope you’ll give it a try. Continue Reading →

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Thai Grilled Chicken: Southern Curry-Basted Grilled Chicken (ไก่ย่างกอและ)

Thai Grilled Chicken
Several emails have come in since I made a remark about how ubiquitous and prominent grilled chicken is in Thailand and how, quite quizzically, the sauce that is made to go with it – its sidekick, if you will – has somehow become more well-known internationally than the grilled chicken itself. Quite a few have expressed agreement; they have noticed the same thing; they want to know why. And all I can offer is the only explanation that makes the most sense to me: 1. Thai grilled chicken is not recognized internationally because most Thai restaurants overseas, the de facto ambassadors of Thai cuisine, do not serve it [*], and 2. due to its versatility, Thai sweet chili sauce (aka the dipping sauce for chicken) is used extensively in several chicken- and non-chicken-related ways.

Good thing it’s easy to make your own Thai-style grilled chicken at home. Continue Reading →

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Thai Grilled Chicken: Lemongrass Grilled Chicken (ไก่ย่างตะไคร้)

Thai grilled Chicken by
Now that the basics have already been addressed, let’s dive into the first recipe of our Thai Grilled Chicken: The Heroine Upstaged by Her Sidekick series: my mother’s lemongrass grilled chicken. This grilled chicken is not made according to any regional tradition or restaurant (though fans of Sirichai Kai Yang in Bangkok would probably see some resemblance).

The chicken is seasoned with the basic Thai marinade with the Thai aromatic ‘trinity’ at its core. Fresh lemongrass provides additional herbal flavor. It’s a very simple recipe which, according to her notes, Mom had used since 1979. Continue Reading →

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