Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ping Gai Chicken

You have to be careful when you tell someone that you are making this dish.

Because if you say it too quickly, it sounds like "pinkeye chicken", which isn't too appetizing.

But appetizing it is! This is a dish we found years ago on BigOven. It was good back then when we made it with sweet chili sauce but now that I use sriracha sauce in it, this Laotian recipe is a superb grilled chicken with layers of heat and sweet.

Ping Gai Chicken
Adapted from the Queen Mother Cafe in Toronto, as published in The Toronto Star
Yields: 6 Servings

4 ea chicken breasts, boneless, SKIN ON

Wet Rub
1 bunch Fresh Cilantro
6 cloves Garlic
1 teaspoon black pepper, coarse cracked
3 tablespoons Oyster sauce
2 tablespoons Soy sauce
2 tablespoons Vegetable oil

1 cup Water
1/2 cups Sugar
3 sprigs Fresh Cilantro
2 cloves Garlic
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Lime Juice
1 tablespoon Thai Garlic Chili Pepper Sauce (sriracha sauce)
1 tablespoon Thai Fish Sauce

Wet Rub:
Rip of the top half of a bunch of cilantro. Don't be picky about some stems being included. Finely chop the cilantro and garlic in a food processor. Add the oyster sauce, soy sauce, black pepper, and oil and pulse the food processor until mixed well into a paste.

Rub the paste onto the chicken breasts and under the skin too. Let marinade for at least 1 hour or overnight if possible.

Dipping sauce:
In a sauce pan, heat the water and sugar until boiling, stirring often. Cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.

Allow the simple syrup to cool. Then add to a food processor with the cilantro, garlic, vinegar, lime juice, sriracha, and fish sauce. Process until smooth. If still too thin, you can add 1/2 to 1 tsp of potato starch to thicken the sauce.

Set up your grill for a direct heat cook at 350f. Place the chicken on, skin side down, for 8 minutes. Flip and cook for another 6-8 minutes, until the breasts hit an internal temp of 160f.

Slice thin, garnish with sliced green onions and drizzle with the "dipping sauce". Serve with sweet Jasmine rice topped with slivers of carrots and jalapenos.

On that note, we are heading out to the Eggtoberfest in the morning. Behave yourselves while we are gone and don't let Scott Baio give you pinkeye.


  1. Not sure why, but I've never made a Thai dish in my life, but we like the cuisine on occasion. I believe this may inspire me to give it a go - you're sure tossing out some nice chicken lately. Enjoy your Egghead get together.

  2. What if you WANT to say it really fast. Get people really confused. So that you can devour the whole recipe yourself? Doesn't sound like such a bad plan...

  3. Ha ha! The name of this chicken does sound like pink eye! Oh sure looks delicious! I love every flavor in the dish, and I can't wait to try it! Have fun at Eggtoberfest!

    Kim in MD

  4. I didn't even know Charles in Charge was still around!! lol
    Ok, as soon as you said Sriracha, my eyes glazed over and the rest of the post was sort of a blur!! :) This sounds so simple and looks soooooooo good!

  5. This looks so delicious! I love sweet and heat and this sounds like something I'd love very much! Can't wait to try it out!

  6. Even if it WERE called Pinkeye Chicken, I would eat it. Looks impossibly tasty.

  7. Yum, yum, yum. I am loving the flavors of this chicken - it looks awesome!

  8. Wow - love Thai food and almost anything with Sriracha in it. Pinkeye Chicken looks delicious as all get out, Chris. (you know that's how I'll file it) :D

  9. I would love to have something like this for dinner. I really would. The pink eye comment is a deterrent but I am pretty sure that was a joke. GREG

  10. Your Pink Eye chicken looks fabulous. I love Thai food...just had my favorite curry at my favorite Thai restaurant today. Inspired me to start making some of my favorite recipes again. As always, great photos Chris.

  11. AWESOME combo of flavors.. always picking out winners, Chris!

  12. OUTSTANDING combination of flavours and with accessible ingredients. I read it all very carefully, and I CAN do it. I love your ABOUT page... especially the part about not eating after you cook. You are the first man I have met that understands how difficult it is to enjoy a meal you have just made. The next day - yes.

  13. That looks yummy! I love dishes with these kind of flavor combinations, and such a good grilling option.

  14. Does your family ever go, Can we have something boring to eat? Because our dinners are awesome and I wonder how others eat dinner.

    Pink Eye chicken. Itchingly good.

  15. Made this over ten years ago with quick instruction from our waitress friend at the Queen Mother.
    I will make this soon enough using the recipe, a delicious dish!


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