The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Isan Grilled Chicken

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Level: Easy

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Description

Northern Thailand grilled chicken that is first brined, then marinated, and grilled. Talk about a flavor explosion, and one that is not spicy.

Ingredients

  • 1 whole Chicken, Cut Into Pieces Or Spatchcocked
  • FOR THE BRINE:
  • ½ cups Kosher Salt
  • ½ cups Granulated Sugar
  • 1 gallon Water
  • FOR THE MARINADE:
  • 6 cloves Garlic
  • ½ cups Thinly Sliced Lemongrass
  • ½ cups Cilantro Leaves And Stems
  • ¼ teaspoons MSG (optional)
  • 3 Tablespoons Oyster Sauce
  • ½ Tablespoons Curry Powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Fish Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons Canola Oil

Preparation

Prepare brine by bringing salt, sugar and water to a boil. Once sugar and salt dissolve, remove from heat and let cool. Once brine is cool, add chicken pieces, cover, and brine for 4 hours, up to 24.

Make the marinade, either using your food processor or the authentic route using a mortar and pestle. Mix marinade ingredients into a wet paste. Scrape into a sealable jar until the chicken is ready.

When chicken is ready, remove it from the pot, rinse and pat dry. Add chicken pieces to a large sealable plastic bag and pour in marinade. Massage marinade into the chicken and marinate for another 4–24 hours, the longer the better in my opinion.

Before grilling, set chicken out to get some of the chill off. I grill over charcoal, but you can grill over wood, gas, or roast in the oven at 400ºF until desired internal temperature. My preference is grilling over coal for a more authentic taste. (I like to heat one side of the grill with coals and keep a warmer side with no coals. This way I can adjust the heat if things get too hot.)

Place chicken on the grill, near the coals, cover, and adjust the vents. You want to go low and slow with this, slowly cooking the chicken, while any skin will get nice and crisp.

As this is cooking, feel free to whip up a dipping sauce that includes fish sauce, lime juice, chili, and a bit of sugar. Also feel free to serve this with jasmine rice, or better yet, sticky rice (this will take a bit more planning, but is recommended). When chicken comes to your desired temperature, remove, and serve.

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