July 14, 2003

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Thai Chicken and Peanut Sauce

Here's something good and new to throw on your grill:

Thai Chicken

1/4 cup canned coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce (called "nam pla" or "nuoc nam," depending on whether it's Thai or Vietnamese in origin)
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons Splenda
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Put everything but the chicken into your blender, and run it until everything's well combined. Cut your chicken breasts into portions, if needed, and put them into a gallon-sized zipper-lock bag. Pour the coconut mixture over them. Press out the air, and seal the bag, then turn it around and about until all the chicken is coated with the marinating mixture. Let the chicken marinate at least a couple of hours, and all day won't hurt.

I like to cook these over charcoal that's burned down to a nice low, steady glow, but you can certainly cook them in your electronic tabletop grill instead, if you prefer. If you're doing them on the grill, you'll want to cook them about 5 minutes per side; in the electric grill they'll take 5-6 minutes total. Either way, baste them halfway through with the mixture left in the bag.

4-6 servings. Assuming 5 servings, they'd have 3 grams each if you licked all the marinating mixture out of the bag, which of course you won't do. So you can figure less than 2 grams per serving. Again, based on 5 servings, and exactly 1 pounds of chicken, you'll get 31 grams of protein per serving.

Serve with Peanut Sauce - which will give you something to do with some of that leftover coconut milk!

Peanut Sauce

This is way too good; you'll be tempted to cheat on your portions.

teaspoon hot sauce
1 tablespoon grated ginger root
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 scallions, chopped
1/3 cup creamy natural peanut butter
1/3 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons Splenda

Just plunk everything into your blender (which you've washed by now, right?) and run it, scraping down the sides a couple of times, until everything's well-blended.

Makes roughly a cup, or 8 servings of 2 tablespoons each. Each will have 4 grams of carbohydrate and 1 gram of fiber, for a usable carb count of 3 grams, and 3 grams of protein. Also about a metric boatload of flavor!

About the coconut milk and the fish sauce: Some of you may be wondering where to find these. My basic rule is that if I have to look in more than two stores here in Bloomington, Indiana, to find an ingredient, I don't use it. Here in Bloomington, I can find these ingredients in the "International" section of Kroger, a big grocery store, or at Sahara Mart, a gourmet/International/Mediterranean/health food store that is also my best source for low carb specialty stuff, or at Bloomingfoods, my health food store. I could probably also get them at any of the Asian markets in town, but didn't bother to look, since I shop at all three of these other places regularly.

Fish sauce is widely used, by the way, in Southeast Asian cuisine, and really doesn't taste that much like fish. It keeps well, so if you like Thai or Vietnamese food, buy a good sized bottle and keep it on hand. If you can't find it, you can substitute soy sauce. Your results will be less authentic, but still quite tasty.

Posted by HoldTheToast at 12:34 AM