Galangal, kaffir lime leaf and lemongrass are the three indispensable ingredients of Cambodian cuisine. They form the base of the marinade for these satay chicken skewers. Marinate the skewers a day before for extra flavour.






Skill level

Average: 3.1 (53 votes)


  • 500 g chicken breast fillets 
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed, chopped 
  • 8 kaffir lime leaves, centre veins discarded, thinly shredded 
  • 1 cm slice galangal, peeled, chopped 
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped 
  • 2 tsp ground turmeric 
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce 
  • 2 tbsp grated palm sugar 
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil, plus extra, to fry 
  • 10 bamboo skewers, soaked 
  • steamed jasmine rice, beansprouts, lime wedges and sliced red chilli (optional), to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time 1 hour

Cut each chicken breast lengthwise into 5 x 1.5 cm strips. To make satay marinade, process lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal and garlic in a small food processor to a paste. (You can also do this using a mortar and pestle).

Transfer paste to a glass or ceramic bowl, add turmeric, soy sauce, sugar and oil, and stir well to combine. Reserve 60 ml (¼ cup) to baste chicken while cooking. Add chicken to remaining marinade and stir to coat well. Cover, then refrigerate for 40 minutes.

Thread each piece of chicken lengthwise onto a bamboo skewer. Heat a little oil in a large frying pan over medium–high heat. Add skewers, in batches if necessary, and cook, turning occasionally and basting with reserved marinade, for 4 minutes or until just cooked through.

Serve with rice, beansprouts, lime wedges and chilli, if desired.



Photography by John Laurie.


As seen in Feast magazine, November 2011, Issue 3. For more recipes and articles, pick up a copy of this month's Feast magazine or check out our great subscriptions offers here.