Friday, July 25, 2014

Taiwanese Style 3 Cup Chicken

3 Cup Chicken
In the Serving Bowl
Over the weekend, we had a guest from Taiwan staying with us and she mentioned this dish. I had seen it being made on TV and hunted down a recipe some time ago. Pauline and I shopped for the ingredients at the Asian market but we didn't get around to making it. 

Today we're going to a concert with friends and I've made this one-pot dish for dinner. We'll have it with steamed rice and a salad.

From what I gather, it's called 3 Cup Chicken because it uses equal proportions of dark sesame oil, dark soy sauce and wine (I used rice wine) for the sauce. It's really easy to make with very little preparation involved.

One recipe grabbed my attention because it marinates the chicken pieces in baking soda for 10 minutes and then thoroughly rinses the pieces under running water. It's incredible how beautifully soft the chicken becomes with this little trick.

I added some umami to the dish with the addition of a little Kecap Manis (sweet soy sauce). There's plenty of salt in the sauce ingredients so I didn't add any more.

Refrigerate left-overs because this tastes even better the next day!

1½ lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut in bite-size pieces
2 Tbsp. baking soda
20 slices ginger
20 cloves garlic, smashed
1/3 cup rice wine
1/3 cup dark soy sauce (regular soy sauce is ok too)
1/3 cup sesame oil
1½Tbsp. kecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
1 tsp. sugar
1 large bunch Thai basil
4 stalks green onions,  cut in 1” lengths

  1. Mix chicken with baking soda and set aside for 10 minutes.
  2. Rinse chicken well under running water, mix with a little salt and oil & set aside.
  3. Stir rice wine, soy sauce and kecap manis in a bowl and set aside.
  4. In a large skillet, heat sesame oil over medium-high heat.
  5. Stir-fry garlic and ginger until fragrant, about 30 seconds. 
  6. Add chicken and cook until browned on all sides. 
  7. Add remaining ingredients except basil and green onions.
  8. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. 
  9. When sauce reduces to ¼ cup & reaches a syrupy consistency, garnish with basil & green onions.

Serve over steamed rice.