Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Soy marinated chicken with vegetable fried rice and bok choi

Phase 1: Chicken - 50 minutes
Marinate chicken (4 pieces of separated and trimmed leg) in mixture of dark mushroom soy sauce, 5 minced cloves of garlic, and 1" piece of minced ginger for at least 4 hours. Preheat oven to 350F. Sear in hot cast iron pan with a bit of frying oil. Flip over, add bok choi and finish in oven for 30 minutes, flipping bok choi halfway through. Rest meat for 10 minutes outside pan to keep it juicy and so it doesn't hurt when you eat it.

Phase 2: Fried Rice - 50 minutes
Boil 3C water and add 1.5C brown rice. Turn heat down to minimum and let sit for 45 minutes. Instead of water, you can also use chicken stock or add flavour. I added a drop of sesame oil and 3 bay leaves to scent the rice.

In wok, saute 1" nub of minced ginger in olive oil (and a touch of sesame oil) for one minute, then add half a spanish onion. When onions are translucent, add 2 chopped carrots. Continue on medium heat until carrots start to soften. Separate florets of broccoli from their stem, peel and chop the stem before adding it to the pot. Chop one red bell pepper and add it along with broccoli florets. Add small amount of soy sauce and oyster sauce to veggies.

Pour cooked rice into wok and add 2Tbsp oyster sauce and 1tbsp soy sauce. Mix well. Vegetables should be cooked but not too soft at this point and the chicken should be resting.

Phase 3: Eat - Variable
Put results of all phases on a plate and eat until full. Louis C.K. claims the meal isn't over when he's full, it's over when he hates himself. So, keep eating if you must.

Phase 4: Results
A guest in my house for this meal known as the Yeddi (spelling not a mistake) couldn't believe I made the sauce for the chicken myself. It is so easy and quick. I called it Teriyaki at the time, but it doesn't have mirin rice wine and wasn't cooked. It is almost as flavourful and way easier than Teriyaki sauce. Sauce from the store doesn't count as easier in this blog.

The rice is still pretty great the next day, so I consider that a win. All the vegetables were the perfect tenderness. I like my red peppers soft, otherwise they would have stayed out until the end. Oyster sauce may sound scary but it is what gives it that authentic Chinese food flavour. Try it! It costs under $10 for the best bottle and you'll get many flavourful meals out of it. It is quite salty, so don't season other food too much.

Try this one out. If you remember the marinade in the morning (5 minutes max), this healthy, satisfying and wholesome meal can be cranked out in under an hour. And chances are you'll have leftovers to enjoy tomorrow. You could put the chicken in a sammich with avocado and cheddar (anchovies?), fry the rice up again until crispy on the edges (possibly in balls stuffed with chicken pieces and breaded first), or be boring and just reheat it.

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