Chicken Puff

Chicken Puff
Chicken Puff

½ pound of minced chicken
3 ½ ounces of preserved radish, finely diced
1/2 cup of chopped roasted peanuts (dry roast in non-stick skillet)
1 tsp of salt
1 tbs fish sauce
2-3 Thai Dragon chiles, minced (red ripe chiles)
2 tbs of palm sugar
1-2 tbs peanut oil
2 cups of cooking oil for deep frying
2 cilantro roots, minced and pounded
3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
Handful of Thai Basil leaves roughly torn
1/4 tsp of ground white pepper (to taste)
1 package of Puff Pastry sheets (or make your own)

In wok or skillet over medium high flame add 1-2 tablespoons of peanut oil.

Add garlic and cilantro root, fry until golden brown and fragrant.

Add minced chicken and cook just until no longer pink.

Add minced chiles, and fish sauce, stir fry.

Add radish, sugar, salt and pepper, cook for 3 to 4 minutes.

Add peanuts and Thai Basil leaves and mix well.

Remove from heat and allow it to cool.

Cut 1 sheet of Puff Pastry into 16 small pieces.

Wrap small portion of chicken mixture in each piece of pastry.

In a deep skillet*, add 2 cups of cooking oil and heat over moderate heat.
Fry each chicken puff in the oil until it turns golden brown, remove from oil, drain on paper towels on racks.
Serve with AaJad (Cucumber Pickle).

If you have a deep fryer this works great to deep fry the puffs quickly.

Cucumber Pickle (Aa Jaad )

In Thailand small side dishes called Kreaung Kiam are often served with snacks and meals. These various salty, sour, sweet, spicey dishes are great accents to the meal.

This recipe for Aa Jaad (cucumber pickle) is a very popular and easy to make table condiment. I don't know why this type of Thai popular pickle is rarely served in Western Thai restaurants, as it is very common in Thailand, especially in Isan (Northeast of Thailand).

Often small dishes of savoury items such as chile nuts, sates, and pickles are served with drinks. This particular cucumber pickle is wonderful with orange or red curries especially duck, chicken, quail or game birds.

This pickle is best when made a head and allowed to sit in the refrigerator for a few days to develop the flavours. You can use Thai Jalapeños, Serranos or other favourite chiles, but I prefer the Thai Dragon chiles.

I highly recommend using fresh water chestnuts as they do not have that tinny canned flavour. Fresh water chestnuts can be found in most Asian markets in the produce section. They are so worth finding as the sweetness and crunch will capture your taste-buds! They are sweet and never starchy as canned water chestnuts often are.

1/2 cup rice vinegar or coconut vinegar
2/3 cup Asian cucumber, sliced
2 tablespoons shallot, finely sliced
1 tablespoon palm date sugar
1 tablespoon fresh water chestnuts, finely sliced
1 tablespoon Thai Jalapeños(prik chi fa daeng) sliced

Slice the cucumber in quarters, length-wise, then slice the pieces into segments about an 1/8" thick.

Remove the chile stems (I prefer using the ripe red chiles) and tap out any loose seeds, and discard, then slice the chiles across into thin rounds. Slice the shallots and water chestnuts.

Combine and serve.

This will keep 2 or 3 weeks in a refrigerator. It is a traditional accompaniment to snacks such as spring rolls, Pun-Sib-Tod or with barbequed foods such as sates and gai yang (chicken).

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