There are two product staples in my kitchen typically associated with Thai cooking — or in my case, Lao cooking — but I keep them handy for many other types of recipes, too. Fish sauce and coconut milk sit alongside the more "typical" condiments and I use them almost as frequently.
Some of my family is from Laos and we have relatives all over the world, so I grew up eating foods from all seven continents, and now I cook the same way for my kids. Because Thailand and Laos share a border they also share many similar flavours and ingredients. Coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, lemongrass, and bay leaves form the basis for great meals that earn nods of approval from my family, and I'm betting even the owner of the Thai restaurant down the street.
Using such basic ingredients means it is easy to incorporate them into many dishes. Stews, casseroles, and many one-pot dishes can be salted with fish sauce, and fish sauce provides a depth of taste that goes beyond salt. When it comes to coconut milk, I'll admit to getting a bit carried away by because it’s the foundation for so many great desserts, and I am powerless when it comes to desserts. Ask my jeans.
Coconut milk is a healthy and slightly sweet replacement for cream in many recipes, and it mixes well with all kinds of salty and rich spices. Coconut milk also provides an option for people who need a dairy alternative. You can also try it with baked fish dishes, rice, or add it to fruit smoothies.
When Thai Kitchen Canada asked me to select and make one of the five finalists’ recipes in the #TKeverday Recipe Challenge; I chose blogger Brandi Yee's Coconut Jerk Shrimp recipe, because the coconut in this recipe sounded too good to resist.
Coconut Jerk Shrimp Skewers with Lime Butter Dip
36 raw medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 teaspoon each Club House Ground Cinnamon, Club House Ground Thyme, salt, Club House Ground Pepper, Club House Ground Nutmeg, and Club House Ground Allspice
1 1/2 teaspoon each minced ginger and Club House Minced Garlic
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 jalapeno seeded and minced fine
1/2 cup of Thai Kitchen Premium Lite Coconut Milk
1/2 cup of canola oil
2 cups shredded coconut
12 medium length wood skewers
Rinse and pat dry shrimp. Mix all ingredients, except shredded coconut, and place in re-sealable bag with shrimp. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight to marinate.
Soak 12 medium length wood skewers for 1/2 hour. Add 3 marinated shrimp to a skewer. Pour flaked coconut on a large plate evenly.
Dip each side of shrimp skewers in flaked coconut to coat evenly.
Grill for approximately 2-3 minutes each side. Serve with Lime Butter dip.
Lime Butter Dip
8 tablespoons of butter, melted with the zest & juice of 1 lime. Serve alongside shrimp.