Chef's Recipes

Martin Boetz: Chicken and prawn salad with caramelised coconut and lime

Australian Gourmet Traveller Thai recipe for chicken and prawn salad with caramelised coconut and lime by Martin Boetz from Longrain restaurant.

By Martin Boetz
  • 45 mins preparation
  • 1 hr 20 mins cooking plus standing, cooling
  • Serves 6
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Martin Boetz: Chicken and prawn salad with caramelised coconut and lime
“This salad balances all the flavours that should be found in Thai food – sweet, sour, salty and with a little heat. You could also serve freshly picked betel leaves on the side for wrapping the mixture in.”


  • 12 cooked large king prawns, peeled and shredded
  • 2 limes, juice only, plus extra limes, to serve
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, white part only, thinly sliced
  • 25 gm (5cm piece) ginger, cut into julienne
  • 45 gm (1/3 cup) roasted unsalted peanuts, coarsely crushed, plus extra, to serve
  • 1 cup (loosely packed) each round mint and coriander leaves
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves, cut into julienne
  • 4 long red chillies, seeds removed, cut into julienne
  • To serve: lime wedges
Poached chicken
Coconut-caramel sauce
  • 20 gm (4cm piece) ginger
  • 3 coriander roots, scraped and cleaned
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 5 white peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 100 gm light palm sugar, shaved
  • 1 dry coconut, flesh finely grated with a zester
  • 2 tsp shrimp floss (see note)
  • 1 tsp shrimp paste, roasted and ground
  • 50 ml fish sauce
  • ½ a lime, juice only


  • 1
    For poached chicken, place chicken stock in a large, deep-sided saucepan, add coconut cream, bring to the boil over high heat. Add oyster and fish sauces, galangal, lime leaves and lemongrass, set aside to infuse (10 minutes). Add chicken, return to the boil over medium-high heat, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, remove from heat. Weight chicken with a plate, cover and stand until chicken is cooked through (45-50 minutes). Remove chicken from liquid, set aside to cool (20-30 minutes), then coarsely shred chicken breast along the grain into long thin strips (discard skin, bone and sinew), transfer to a large bowl.
  • 2
    Meanwhile, for coconut-caramel sauce, pound ginger, coriander, garlic and peppercorns in a mortar and pestle to a fine paste. Heat oil over medium heat in a saucepan, add paste, stir until golden (2-3 minutes). Add palm sugar, stir until melted (4-5 minutes), add a little hot water to melt, if necessary, cook until light caramel (5-6 minutes). Add coconut, shrimp floss and shrimp paste, bring to a simmer over high heat, add fish sauce and 50ml water, season to taste – it should be sweet and salty. Return to boil, set aside, cool to room temperature (30-40 minutes), stir through lime juice. Makes 185ml.
  • 3
    Add prawn to chicken with coconut-caramel sauce, lime juice, lemongrass, ginger and peanuts and toss to combine. Add mint, coriander, lime leaves and chilli, gently toss to combine, and serve scattered with extra peanuts, with lime wedges to the side.


Note Shrimp floss is small dried shrimp blended in a spice grinder into a fine powder. This recipe is from the November 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
Drink Suggestion: 2008 Pizzini Rosetta or any balanced rosé. Drink suggestion by Sam Christie

  • Author: Martin Boetz