You'll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.
- 1 tsp white peppercorns
- 10 garlic cloves
- 5 coriander roots, soaked to remove dirt and scraped
- 15 gm (about 2 pieces) turmeric
- 2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp light palm sugar, crushed
- 12 chicken thigh fillets, skin scored
- 2 sugarcane stalks, about 30cm long each
- 60 ml white vinegar (¼ cup)
- 60 gm caster sugar (¼ cup)
- 4 red shallots, thinly sliced
- 1 birdseye chilli, thinly sliced
- 1 Lebanese cucumber, quartered lengthways and thinly sliced
- 1Pound peppercorns in a mortar and pestle until finely ground. Set aside. Pound garlic, coriander, turmeric and lemongrass in mortar and pestle until a paste forms, add fish sauce and sugar and stir to combine. Rub over chicken and marinate in a non-reactive container overnight.
- 2Meanwhile, for cucumber pickle, combine vinegar, sugar and 60ml water in a saucepan over medium heat, stir to dissolve sugar, then set aside to cool. Add remaining ingredients and refrigerate to pickle (6 hours-overnight). Transfer to a sterilised container. Cucumber pickle will keep refrigerated for a week.
- 3Split sugarcane stalks in half lengthways with a large chef's knife or cleaver, then cut into thirds. Thread a chicken thigh onto each sugarcane skewer.
- 4Heat a barbecue (or char-grill pan) to medium and grill chicken, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through (20-25 minutes). Set aside to rest (5 minutes), then serve with cucumber pickle.