Chicken skewers marinated in a Hawaiian coconut and pineapple marinade. One bite, and you’ll be doing the hula dance, they’re that good! Great for grilling, cooking on this stove or even under the broiler/grill!
I’m sharing this today in defiance of winter. Yesterday it was 26C/79F and I spent my lunch hour at the beach. Seriously. We’re 6 days away from winter!
It is actually warmer here in Sydney than it was in LA – where it’s 6 days away from summer. And so while I’m usually bundled up in my ugg boots and wooly scarves making lasagna, I’m still in thongs and shorts, grilling outdoors.
Specifically, grilling these Hawaiian Chicken Skewers.
The star of this recipe is the marinade which is made with coconut milk and pineapple juice along with other flavours that are used in the marinade for chicken that you get from roadside-stalls in Hawaii. The marinade base is actually quite similar to the Hawaiian chicken marinade, except for the addition of coconut milk.
Coconut milk is brilliant for marinades. I first discovered it in a Bobby Flay recipe (this Coconut Marinated Grilled Chicken is based on his recipe) and now I’m a bit obsessed. It adds coconut flavour (mild, not overpowering), a touch of sweet (coconut milk is sweet) AND it adds richness too, from the fat in the coconut milk.
I like to use the juice from canned pineapple pieces for this recipe, because I like searing the pineapple and using them as a garnish. But you can can use plain pineapple juice if you prefer.
I served this with a Coconut Lime Rice. I know, I know, it’s coconut on coconut, but neither are heavy with coconut flavours and the rice is freshened up with lime so it’s not one dimensional. Plus, I find it efficient because the rice recipe + this marinade = 1 can of coconut milk. I find it a bother using half a can of coconut milk and having to think about / remember to use the rest!
Not that it’s hard to use up a bit of leftover coconut milk. It’s just the remembering part. (PS Coconut milk also freezes well.)
I skewered these but I use this marinade for any cut of chicken, from drumsticks to breast (brilliant for chicken breast because the coconut milk adds richness to the lean meat), thigh fillets to thigh cutlets.
So – who’s ready to head off to Hawaii with these? Close your eyes, take a bite and I bet you have to resist the urge to start doing the hula dance! 😉 – Nagi x
PS And I’ll be right there along side you, doing my ridiculous version of a hula dance. Even though dancing is not my forte…..as my friends will attest to! Baby Hands and two left feet. #LifeIsHard
- ¾ cup coconut milk (from a 14oz/400g can, use leftovers for Coconut Lime Rice!)
- ½ cup pineapple juice (Note 1)
- 3 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp tomato sauce/ketchup
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- Zest and juice of 1 lime
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ tsp EACH onion powder, cumin, paprika,
- 1 tsp ginger powder (or ½ tsp grated fresh ginger)
- ½ - 1 tsp cayenne pepper, optional
- ½ tsp salt
- 1.5lb / 750g chicken thigh fillets, cut into 1"/2.5cm pieces
- 1 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
- 8 skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes if cooking on outdoor BBQ
- Combine Marinade ingredients in a bowl. Remove ½ cup of Marinade (for basting) and set aside in fridge. Add chicken, cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 3 hours, preferably overnight. But even 20 minutes is enough - compensate with extra basting.
- Drain and discard marinade. Thread chicken onto skewers.
- Heat oil in a large skillet or on outdoor BBQ over medium high heat. Cook skewers, turning to cook all sides, and basting generously with reserved Marinade. (Note 1)
- Serve with Coconut Lime Rice.
2. I baste on the cooked sides then turn to caramelise the Marinade for a few seconds (it does not take long). It takes around 6 - 8 minutes to cook - depends how thick the chicken pieces are.
Nutrition per serving, assuming 2 skewers per serving. This nutrition takes into account the amount of marinade that is discarded.
No surprises here….look who’s skulking under the table laden with FOOD….