The coconut milk tenderizes the chicken legs, and the lime zest and kaffir lime pack a punch of citrus flavor. The marinade takes no time to put together. Just make sure you marinate the chicken overnight if you want the chicken to be really tender. If you like your food spicy, by all means add more chile to taste—but if you like things mild, you can leave it out altogether.
Note: You can set aside 1 cup of marinade at the start of the recipe before you add the chicken. Use the reserved marinade as a sauce to drizzle over the final grilled chicken.
- To make the marinade, place the coconut milk, ginger, garlic, lime zest, kaffir lime leaves, sugar, fish sauce, cilantro, and red chiles, if using, in a food processor and process until the ingredients are combined.
- Add the chicken and marinade to a large mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight.
- The chicken can be cooked on a grill or in the oven. To cook in the oven, preheat the oven to 400°F and heat a grill pan on high heat. Coat your grill pan with olive oil spray. Brown the chicken in batches for 2 minutes on each side. Place the chicken in a baking dish and bake in the oven for 45 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear.
- If cooking on outdoor grill, preheat the grill. Oil the grates lightly with vegetable oil. Add the chicken and cook on all sides until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear.
- Squeeze the quartered limes over the chicken. Serve the chicken with steamed rice, salad, and additional lime wedges.
Recipe by Hung Quach