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Grilled Beef Satay


From America's Test Kitchen Season 13: Skewered and Wrapped

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Rate this recipe 4.5/5 (20 Votes)


  • 4 6 as a main dish, or 6 as an appetizer
  • Ingredients
  • Basting Sauce
  • 3/4 3/4cup 3/4cup light or regular coconut milk
  • 3 3 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
  • 3 3 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 2 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 3 3 shallots, minced
  • 2 2 to 6 lemon grass, trimmed to bottom 6 inches and minced
  • 2 2 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 1/2 1 1/2 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 3/4 3/4 3/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 1/2 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 1/2 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Beef
  • 2 2 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 2 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 1 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 1 1/2- to 1 3/4-pound) 1/4- 3/4-pound) flank steak, halved lengthwise, then sliced on slight angle against grain into 1/4- inch thick slices
  • Disposable aluminum roasting pan


Adapted from


Step 1


1. FOR THE BASTING SAUCE: Whisk all ingredients together in bowl. Reserve one-third of sauce in separate bowl. (Use reserved sauce to apply to raw beef.)

2. FOR THE BEEF: Whisk oil, sugar, and fish sauce together in medium bowl. Toss beef with marinade and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Weave beef onto 12-inch metal skewers, 2 pieces per skewer, leaving 1 1/2 inches at top and bottom of skewer exposed. You should have 10 to 12 skewers.

3a. FOR A CHARCOAL GRILL: Poke twelve 1/2-inch holes in bottom of roasting pan. Open bottom vent completely and place roasting pan in center of grill. Light large chimney starter mounded with charcoal briquettes (7 quarts). When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour into roasting pan. Set cooking grate over coals with grates parallel to long side of roasting pan, cover, and open lid vent completely. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes.

3b. FOR A GAS GRILL: Turn all burners to high, cover, and heat grill until very hot, about 15 minutes. Leave all burners on high.

4. Clean and oil cooking grate. Place beef skewers on grill (directly over coals if using charcoal) perpendicular to grate. Brush meat with one-third basting sauce (portion reserved for raw meat) and cook (covered if using gas) until browned, about 3 minutes. Flip skewers, brush with half of remaining basting sauce, and cook until browned on second side, about 3 minutes. Brush meat with remaining basting sauce and cook 1 minute longer. Transfer to large platter and serve with peanut sauce.


How to Prep Lemon Grass

The tender heart of the lemon grass stalk is used to flavor many Southeast Asian dishes, including our Grilled Beef Satay. While lemon grass is often steeped in soups and stews and removed before serving, it can also be minced and left in the dish. When buying lemon grass, look for green (not brown) stalks that are firm and fragrant.

1. Trim dry leafy top (this part is usually green) and tough bottom of each stalk.

2. Peel and discard dry outer layer until moist, tender inner stalk is exposed.

3. Smash peeled stalk with bottom of heavy saucepan to release maximum flavor from fibrous stalk.

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