1.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
1 inch tamarind + 2 Tbsp hot water
4 cloves garlic
4 candlenuts Pinch of salt
1 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp Indonesian kecap manis
1 Tbsp coriander powder
2 Tbsp coconut sugar
15-20 bamboo skewers soaked in cold water
1 Tbsp of cooking oil
1 Tbsp grated garlic
2 shallots peeled and diced
2 red chilis -optional seeded and finely chopped
1/2 cup of sweet soy sauce kecap manis
Juice of 1/2 lime
Pinch of salt
Fried shallots crisp bawang goreng
PREPARING CHICKEN AND MARINATE:
Cut the chicken into roughly about 1.5 inch pieces. Place 2 inches of tamarind in a bowl and put 4 Tbsp of hot water and let it soak for 10 minutes. This will be divided for marinade and peanut sauce later. Use the back of the spoon to mash the softened tamarind and squeeze out as many liquids as possible from the tamarind. Discard the solids.
Place candlenuts and garlic in a food processor and pour half of the tamarind juice and process into a paste. Add the rest of the ingredients for marinade in a large mixing bowl and add in the paste. Add chicken pieces and toss to make sure all pieces are coated with marinade. Cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes if you are pressed for time. You can let them marinate overnight too.
Meanwhile soak the bamboo skewers in cold water for at least 1 hour so they don’t break easily when you grill them.
After the meat is marinated, thread the meat on each bamboo skewer.
Preheat your grill and grill the chicken until it is golden brown and cooked through and basting the meat with some cooking oil for that shine.
MAKING THE KECAP SAUCE:
Meanwhile, make the sauce by preheating a small saucepan with cooking oil. Add in garlic, chili, and shallots and saute for about 1 minute. Add in the sweet soy sauce followed by juice of 1/2 lime. Have a taste, it should be more at the sweet side, but I like to add a pinch of salt to bring out more flavor.
Serve with the sauce on the side or drizzle some on top. You can also sprinkle on some fried shallots crisp (bawang goreng).