Tag Archives: rice

RECIPE – Want Chinese Chicken?

Remember Nong’s Thai take on Hainan chicken in Portland?  The bird poached in fragrant stock. Rice steamed just perfect. Don’t forget the famous dark, gingery, just-tart sauce.

Here’s our version.

Ok Imma make this quick and dirty, because this is a meal I associate with late-dinners or Friday evenings when Dad didn’t want to cook, while I was growing up.  These are the best meals, and also ones I forget to share as I feel like most people already have their quick go-to’s.  It takes minimal prep, is extremely healthy, and if you’re lucky you might have leftovers for lunch.  I’m aware that the lack of colour on the skin may take some getting used to, but it’s clearly clean-eating!

There are many variations of this dish, from the Thai-take on it, to the Hainese (HOI LAM GUY FAN|海南雞飯).  Most Cantonese families will have it with steamed rice and boiled vegetables, making it is very low in added fat. Other variations of the recipe have fancy ice baths and salt scrubs to ensure the skin of the chicken looks as appealing as possible, but really now – ain’t nobody got time for that. 

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Right so let’s get started.

 

Pick up a whole chicken at the store make sure it’s super fresh.

Try to get a free-run chicken, because traditionally our aunties tell us that they have the ‘firmest’ meat not like that mushy stuff we get in North America.

 

NOTE: Please do not wash your chicken.  DO NOT wash your chicken with water in the sink, because you will more likely get ill than if you skip the wash step.  Washing with water effectively sprays campylobactor, a pathogen found in >60% of Irish chickens, up onto the counter and surrounding area.  This is not a food safety lesson, but it kind of is.  

 

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Gently lift the chicken out of the hot water bath using stiff utensils like serving spoon/fork or kitchen tongs.  The cavity of the bird will be filled with water so let that drain out and careful not to tear parts of the chicken.

Place it on a large plate to catch any juices

Pierce the drumstick with a chopstick (the real asian way), and if the liquid runs clear and not bloody, then your chicken is finished.

I would recommend using a temperature probe. Poke the probe into the thickest piece of meat without touching the bone. Your chicken is cooked at 160ºF or 71ºC.

While your chicken cooks (or bathes)…

Make it a nice sauce.


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This. Sauce. Is. DEADLY.

It’s quoted to be as addictive as crystal meth by some, but it’s simple – just a grated ginger and chopped scallion/green onion sauce.  It can be made into a vinaigrette, but let’s keep it simple.

Using these ingredients from the list:

2-inch nubbin’ of ginger

scallions,chopped finely

cooked or heated oil

1/2 tsp salt

Oyster sauce (optional)

 

Grate the ginger into a bowl, take care to keep the juice.

Add the chopped scallions

In a small sauce pan, bring the oil to smoke. Set aside to cool.

Add salt & oil the warm oil to the bowl and mix.

 

There we are, voila… poached chicken & deadly sauce.

Carve the chicken and serve.

If you need help carving look HERE (video) or HERE (pictures).  We personally loved the instructions from Thomas Keller’s ad hoc at Home book as well.

 

Few final notes:

Do you want to know how to make perfect rice, no measure, every time? We will share our secrets with you if you give us a shout-out below.

Reduce waste – the water that you used to cook the chicken can be saved and used in other dishes as a mellow broth.

 

 

 

 

 

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Ethnic Food Series: Q&A with DUCK Dublin

HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR TO YOU!

 

It’s time to celebrate and of course we don’t discriminate, lunar new year isn’t just for Chinese people. Every one on the lunar calendar celebrates the new year this time of year. Apparently it’s the largest migration of people in the whole year! People returning to celebrate new years at home.

 

Dubliners, we continue the ethnic food series this week.  It just so happens to be the lunar new year, and that means we are extra festive, eat WAY too much, receive lucky money from all our elders, and in turn wish them well wishes! Take this time to give any overseas family a call to see how they are doing tell them you’re thinking of them, it’s kind of what we do.  (also, it’s a time where we buy/wear new clothes.  fitting, Brown Thomas has a New Years Celebration on today with all the cultural experiences of a Lion Dance and candy! Take it in )

the prep time can span a few days; marinating, blanching, then drying the duck. ..roasting it in the special bullet oven. 

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This past summer we welcomed a new Chinese noshery to Dublin.  Why is this exciting? – because it is unlike any of the other Chinese place you know.  I want you to take those ‘sweet & sour’, ‘fried wonton’-preconceptions and throw them out.  I dare say, it offers the closest experience of Hong Kong-style barbecue street meat that one can get in Dublin.  It really hasn’t gotten the press it deserves, considering it straddles our Irish trend of 2014 ‘Southern BBQ meat’ and the recent obsessions with street food.

 

What to order: BBQ Duck and/or Pork on Rice (don’t be afraid to mix & match)

 

DUCK is just across the way from Fade St. Social, on Fade Street ;).  It is in the core of the city and is approachable and oh so oriental.  It is the new innovative project brought to you by Eva, who is a lead at the Asia Market Importers.

There’s no better way to learn than to ask questions.  So, Eva and I had a chat about the Chinese food in Ireland and here’s the Q&A:

 

How do you think Irish perceive Chinese food & how do you think we can change that – is it indicative of what Chinese food really is? 
I think a lot of Irish people like Chinese food. Chinese restaurants and take aways can be seen everywhere even in the smaller towns in Ireland.  The earliest Chinese immigrants to Ireland would have come from Hong Kong so a lot of the Chinese food style that currently exists is influenced by Hong Kong style dishes, including sweet and sour pork, beef in black bean sauce, spring rolls. 

 

What did you study?
I studied Information and Communications Technology at Trinity College Dublin.

 

What’s your most fave thing to make at home? I love making soup noodles and sushi at home.


Fave place to eat & place to get coffee in Dublin? 
It’s difficult to choose a favourite place to eat, but I love pichet on trinity street. 
coffee wise i like sasha coffee shop on Drury street, very near to where i work and the coffee is really good.
 

What’s the most influential thing that has developed your understanding of food?

My parents have influenced me a lot in developing my understanding and love of food.  I used to help them cook dinners when I was younger and my dad would help me bake cakes and make cookies. he blames his big belly from eating all the goodies I make!

 

Thanks Eva for sharing your thoughts with us.

 

As a final note, I spent another day with the chef at Duck and it was really eye-opening.  It’s true that everyone has a story, and learning new cultures and assimilating to new places can be different experience for each.

 

In the west, we have pastry chefs, commis chefs, etc. In contrast, Chef Yip tells me that there are special bbq chefs and dim sum chefs in Hong Kong, who train to make these specific dishes.  The prep time for some of these things can span a few days; marinating,  blanching, then drying the duck.  Painting on the secret sauce for the outer layer and roasting it in the special bullet oven contraption.  (must be the Chinese answer to the Tandoori) It is an intricate process, that requires exceptional skill to get a crisp and flavourful duck that is moist.  –  oh, the things we take for granted.

 

I’d encourage you to try the pork belly ‘siu yok’ if you like crackling!

Tell me, what are your cultural experiences.  What’s something you’re extra cautious about let’s chat!

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