Chicken in Spicy Lemongrass Sauce (Ayam Sambal Goreng Sereh)

This recipe for Indonesian-style lemongrass chicken is deliciously outstanding, as lemongrass chicken always is! And the lemongrass was grown in our garden to boot! 

The greatest thing about this lemongrass chicken is how many anti-inflammatory ingredients are included. I was just talking with my mom this morning about how food is medicine and this dish is a shining example of that. Between the lemongrass, ginger, garlic, galangal, and turmeric, this is a meal that is sure to please your belly and keep your body healthy and happy. 

To keep this dish on anti-inflammatory end, I served it up with a rice alternative that is made out of konnyaku flour and oat flour. Definitely not a bad substitute for white rice, I must say! Plus the calories were reduced by half, which means more chicken for me, yay!

If you’d like to learn more about Indonesian cuisine, check out this guide from Bookmundi about local must-try foods. It’s known to make tummies rumble!

Chicken in Spicy Lemongrass Sauce (Ayam Sambal Goreng Sereh)

Adapted from Daily Cooking Quest
Time: 1 Hour
Serves 4

4 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs
1 tsp salt
½ tsp turmeric powder
10 birdseye chilies, or more to taste
3 shallots
3 cloves garlic
2 lemongrass stalks, white part only
2-inch piece galangal
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
3 tbsp olive oil
2 lemongrass stalks, bruised and knotted
1 cup light coconut milk
½ tbsp tamarind + 4 tbsp hot water, mixed well, strained
2 tbsp sugar
Kosher salt, to taste
Steamed coconut rice, to serve

In a large bowl, marinate chicken with salt and turmeric for 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, prepare spice paste by adding chilies, shallots, garlic, 2 lemongrass stalks (white pieces only), galangal, and turmeric to a food processor. Blend until the paste reaches a smooth consistency.

Heat oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven on medium-high heat. Fry chicken until the skin is crispy and golden brown, about 5-6 minutes on each side. Transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm.

In the same skillet, add spice paste and lemongrass, and fry until fragrant, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add coconut milk, tamarind paste, sugar, and salt to the frying pan. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Return the chicken into the pan and cook until the sauce is reduced and the chicken is fully cooked. Serve over steamed coconut rice.