Peanut Chicken with Cucumber Rice
Oh, peanut butter, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I had never read Sonnet 43 until just now, but I do wonder if the poet’s muse was actually peanut butter. There are countless ways to love peanut butter as far as I’m concerned. These PB&J Cookies are one way. And this Sweet and Spicy Noodle Salad is another. But Peanut Chicken with Cucumber Rice is a brand new way that I have found to love thee. Thee, being peanut butter, of course.
Peanut chicken over rice became a favorite meal of mine while visiting our Aunt Michelle in Austin. So I was thrilled when I found a recipe for peanut sauce over…lamb chops (?!) in Granny’s Recipe Box. Over lamb chops is definitely a new way to love (or at least reconsider) peanut butter. But I couldn’t get that peanut chicken out of my head. So I switched up Granny’s recipe and mixed in some of my favorite garnishes and texture combos. The result is Peanut Chicken with Cucumber Rice. The sweet and slight spice of the peanut sauce goes perfectly with the cool crunch of the cucumber and cilantro in the rice.
I mean, would it be dramatic to say “I love this dish to the level of every day’s most quiet need.” I’m telling you, I’m not convinced peanut butter is not the “thee” of Sonnet 43 by Elizabeth Barrett Browning . So next time you wonder if you could possibly find one more way to love
thee peanut butter, give Peanut Chicken with Cucumber Rice a shot. I think you will find the answer to your question is yes!
Peanut Chicken with Cucumber Rice is warm, cool, and oh so easy! Make this recipe on repeat, and never get sick of it. Great for weeknights or entertaining!
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 2 T peanut oil
- 3 cloves garlic
- 6 T soy sauce
- 1 T dark molasses
- 1/2 c peanut butter
- 1/8 t sriracha (or to taste)
- 1 lemon juiced
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 c rice
- 1 T butter
- 2 T cilantro
- 1 cucumber, halved and de-seeded
- 1 carrot, peeled and chopped into matchsticks
- 1/4 c crushed peanuts, for garnish
Chop the chicken into small pieces, as if you were making a stir-fry. Place the chicken in a large Ziploc bag
Combine the peanut oil, garlic, soy sauce, molasses, peanut butter, sriracha, and lemon juice. Either whisk briskly or pulse a few times in a food processor to make a smooth sauce. Add some salt and pepper to taste. Remove 1/2 c of the sauce and set aside. Pour the remaining sauce over the chicken and allow to marinate for a while. 1.5 hours is enough, but longer is great. Not marinating is also totally fine.
Cook the rice according to package instructions (2 c water for 1 c rice). While the rice is cooking, chop half of the cucumber into very small pieces. Wash, dry, and chop 2 T cilantro.
Now prepare the chicken. Pour the contents of the Ziploc bag, including the sauce, into a skillet or large wok. Stir fry the chicken for about 6-8 minutes until cooked through.
When the rice is cooked, stir in 1T butter. Allow to cool a bit, and then add the chopped cucumber and cilantro. Add salt to taste.
Put a scoop of the cucumber rice on each plate. Top with the peanut chicken. The fun part is the garnish. Use the rest of the cucumber, chopped into pieces, the match stick carrots, cilantro, and crushed peanuts to garnish. Pour some of the reserved sauce on top and serve.