Monday, June 14, 2010

Aromatic Soy Poached Chicken 醬油滷雞 (豉油雞)




One thing most people overlooked when they visit a Chinese BBQ restaurant is the soy poached chicken. Why have a second look at the not overly attractive brown chickens when one is being seduced by the glistening char siu (bbq red pork), the seductive siu yuk (crispy pork belly) and the much loved crispy skin roast ducks? 醬油滷雞 (pronounced jiang you lu ji in mandrarin) or 豉油雞 (pronounced si yew kei in Cantonese) is another ancient Chinese dish that managed to stand the test of time. The ingenious poaching technique will produce the most moist and delicious chicken time and time again. A successful poached chicken should possess what the Chinese would refer to as 皮滑肉嫩 (pronounced pi hua rou nen) smooth silky skin with tender flesh. Cooling the chicken a little before cutting will ensure the delicious jelly to form between the meat and skin too.
P.S the poaching liquor can be used to poach other meat and poultry. I will be posting other way of using the used cooking liquor. 



serve 4 to 6 as part of a Chinese meal
you'll need;
1 free range chicken* (1.2 to 1.5 kg bird)
1 spring onion julienne
*only good quality chicken should be used for this dish.

for the aromatic soy poaching liquor;
1 cup of light soy
1/2 cup of dark soy
6 cups of water
1/2 cup of rock sugar
1 cup of chinese cooking wine
5 cm knob of ginger, sliced
3 garlic cloves
1 spring onion (white part only)
1 cassia bark or cinnamon stick
2 star anise
1 tsp of Sichuan peppercorns



Marinate chicken with soy and aromatics for 20 minutes.





First prepare the poaching liquor by simmering everything in a pot for 30 minutes.



Place chicken breast side down and bring it back to a simmer, cover and simmer on the lowest heat for 30 minutes. Turn the chicken over half way through the cooking. Strain and keep the cooking liquor for other uses. If time is on your side; place the chicken in, simmer for 10 minutes then turn off the heat, cover and let the chicken steep til the liquor has cooled down. The result is a chicken that is coloured more evenly all over.



Remove chicken and brush some sesame oil over the bird. Cover and let it rest for at least 15 minute before cutting.



Cut chicken Chinese style and arrange  neatly in a shallow bowl or platter. Ladle some of the hot strained liquor over.



Place julienne spring onions on top of the chicken and pour 1/3 cup hot cooking oil.



I made some garlic lime and chili sauce  to go with the dish.

63 comments:

  1. this sound really yummy and delicious. I must find one day to cook this chicken. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. Woww very delicious dish..thanks for sharing..

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  3. Hi tummy! another simple recipe, i like it! but klu i skip cooking wine tu dia punyer taste mesti beza sbb guna byk juga tu, tp i nak cuba juga :D thanks 4 sharing!

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  4. Yes. What a wonderful one dish meal. I just feel like tucking in now !

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  5. What a simple and yummy chicken dish.

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  6. What I love this Chinese series is everything looks delicious by really simple to prepare as well. The chicken does look very tender and the sauce must be so tasty with all the spices in it.

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  7. I haven't had this for a while. Only ever had this in a restaurant but will certainly try this when I have friends over next!

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  8. Special chicken rice! My children will be so happy to have this :D Looks very delicious.

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  9. A pity that my English is very bad and internet translators not understand let me finish. Although I take more or less match. ,-D
    The chicken and prepared delicious with that sauce so appetizing.
    Everything that I love to prepare, since I love Asian food.
    Kisses from Gran Canaria. Spain.
    ,-D

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  10. Mmmm, poached chicken rice. So yummy and makes me homesick again, waaah. Great job as always :)

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  11. Harriet from CarltonJune 14, 2010 at 6:51 PM

    Oh thats what the brown chickens are :) I have never ordered that because they don't look too good hanging right next to other yummy treats lol
    Now I know how it is done, I will certainly try it out.

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  12. Sonia ,
    Thank you! It is so simple, you must!

    Priya ,
    Thank you very much!

    ijayuji ,
    Terima kasih ye! Tidak pakai cooking wine pun tidak mengapa, masih sedap.

    tigerfish,
    Thank you and please do hehe

    Angie,
    Thank you very much!

    CW,
    Thank you very much! Do give it a try!

    Yasmin ,
    Thank you! I hope you will do that!

    MaryMoh ,
    Thank you! Cook for them soon! :)

    CUMI & CIKI ,
    Me too!

    Amanda ,
    Thats ok, your English is very good! Thank you and I hope you will try the recipe.

    shaz ,
    Thank you very much! You just returned from home lol :)

    Harriet ,
    Never judge a book by its cover lol You'll be a convert!!

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  13. Great as always ! I love the anise-infused soy in this dish and the aroma coming from the kitchen when cooking this must have been heavenly.

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  14. I made this, I made this for lunch!!!! Because I am dead cheapskate, I make 1/3 of the sauce and steam them with my chicken. Still very very yummy and delicious! Amazing!!!!!

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  15. I am going to do half a chicken can you advice me on the cooking time? Thanks!

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  16. I like the sauce nampak seperti sauce nasi ayam.Pasti akan try ni:)

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  17. wow..can u send me some...Really tempting...!

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  18. the pix which u dip the chicken in garlic lime n chili sauce is sooo mouth watering, nyummm! By the way Ive tried yr soya sauce prawns... it's so delicious, tq so much for the recipe. :-)

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  19. It looks delicious and you have a great presentation. Lots of good flavors there!

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  20. Love what is in the poaching liquor buddy. The chicken looks very tender too. Did you enjoy your long weekend?

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  21. 我通長只用罐裝鹵汁,懶嗎!看來真的皮滑肉嫩呀!

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  22. This really looks wonderful. I'm going to give this a try. I have a dish that is quite similar to this though it uses chicken parts. Your poaching liquid sounds delicious. I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

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  23. hi tummy ..makcik pastikan mak cik dah makan dinner sebelum singgah rumah tummy..hehe bila tenguk ayam ni terasa lapar pula..
    auntie nak tanya kalau tak guna skinnya sedap ke..sebab rumah auntie we don't eat the skin..
    kalau tak guna cooking wine nak guna apa ya..

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  24. wow looks so tender never seen chicken cooked like this delicious hope you get some cool Turkish spices lol

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  25. The chicken looks beautiful all nicely browned and cooked like that. It's such a simple dish it would be a shame not to try it. I do like to cook whole chickens. Another great recipe for us!

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  26. Yummy and absolutely delicious. Love the recipe. I love poached chicken. Nice recipe.

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  27. I made this chicken dish very often! Simply delicious. I love especially the gravy. Normally, I'll marinade the chicken with dark soy sauce & some spices before boiling it. Yours look really tasty with that homemade chili sauce. Hope you'll have a great day!
    Cheers, Kristy

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  28. I love poached chicken but have never had it this way, it looks wicked good!

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  29. Oh! My mom used to make chicken this way...no need to say that I haven't tried yet...your look so tasty and the chicken so tender...great pictures :-)

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  30. le poulet de cette façon est irrésistiblement bon, tu es un chef
    bravo et bonne soirée

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  31. Sounds like a terrific method for cooking chicken, new to me and I would love to try!

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  32. I love poached chicken. The jelly between the skin and meat..yum!

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  33. The chicken looks so succulent and the sauce must go so well with rice!
    We are making the soy sauce prawns tonight! :)

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  34. You are right, we never really oder this at Chinese restaurants, there's always other distractions =) looks great!

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  35. This is making me homesick :( 皮滑肉嫩 is just how this dish should be!

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  36. I seldom cook whole chickens, but this sounds too good not to try.

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  37. hey tummy,gr8 simple recipe...

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  38. i seen something like this on tv. my goodness it looks so mouth watering. i dont like cooking whole chicken cause ....i hate waiting sooo longgg lol.

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  39. I like this chicken dish too. We call it 'See yau kai'. Add in some fried bean curd or hard boiled egg, goes well with white porridge too!

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  40. this z first here... wow !!!! really ur great .. i saw all ur recipes... good work

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  41. I do love to poach chicken and usually poach with Italian aromatics (old habits die hard). I am loving the Asian poaching liquid. And I thik browned chicken looks perfectly lovely!

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  42. Hey just wanted to let you know you won my giveaway.

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  43. Hi! Bo leads me here and I am liking what I saw! great looking chicken dish there... get to learn some mandarin too lol! Cheers!

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  44. Mr Noodles ,
    Thank you! The beautiful smell lingers on indeed :)

    Quinn,
    Steaming sounds delicious too!

    CW ,
    Sorry for the late reply. For half a chicken reduce the cooking time to 20 minutes.

    makcikmanggis ,
    Terima kasih, cubalah makcik!

    Jay,
    No problem :)

    yus5478,
    Thank you very much! I am glad you like the prawn dish :)

    Pam ,
    Thank you very much!

    fitzboy ,
    Thanks buddy! Very quiet one with lots of reading and walking. :)

    大肥 ,
    謝謝!這比較便宜美味呀!

    Mary,
    Thank you very much! I hope you will give it a try! :)

    mohdandmeriam ,
    Haha terima kasih makcik! Kalau tak makan kulitnya, kupaskan selepas dah masak. Kulit akan melindungi dagingnya supaya tidak jadi "tough"

    Rebecca,
    Thank you! I hope so too!

    Lyndsey,
    Thank you very much! Give it a try it is very versatile, can go with rice or noodles.

    Shriya ,
    Thank you very much!

    Adventures in Domestic Cooking ,
    Thank you!

    Kristy,
    I must try your method next! Thank you!

    Bob,
    Thank you! Try it and you will be hooked lol

    Juliana ,
    Thank you very much! Now you can try cooking it! :)

    Fimère ,
    Merci beaucoup!

    5 Star Foodie ,
    Thank you! Please give it a try!

    KL girl in MELB,
    Haha you know what you are talking about!

    Tricia F,
    Thank you! Good luck with the prawns!

    pigpigscorner ,
    Thank you! We hardly order this too, always duck and crispy pork lol

    shanshan,
    Haha thank you very much!

    Bo,
    Try this and you will see how easy it is :)
    Thanks for the book! I am over the moon!


    Reshmi ,
    Thank you very much!

    Ann,
    Thank you! You can use method 2 and you will have a chicken ready when you return home.

    Cheah,
    Yeah I put si yew kei lol I normally put eggs and tofu puff with the pork version too :)

    Guna's kitchen,
    Thank you very much!

    Claudia,
    Thank you very much! Haha it is in your blood I guess :)
    Do give it a try!

    Jeannie ,
    Oh that is great! Thanks you! :)

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  45. Tasty and simple dish!
    Thanks for sharing it!
    You're awarded! Pls "visit" my site!
    B xx

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  46. Hi! Was so happy when I chanced upon this recipe of yours. Tried it yesterday but the chicken doesn't have an even coating even though I left it inside the gravy till it cooled. What did I do wrong?

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  47. Ros,
    Did you rub the marinade into the chicken before leaving it to marinate?

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  48. Ah! I didn't rub it in. Only coated it with the marinade and let it sit. Thanks! It was very flavoursome though.

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  49. Just made this not a couple of hours ago and me and the boyf are sitting here with very, very happy tummies!

    It's so easy to make and the broth/poaching liquor left over is lip-smackingly good. I used individual chicken thighs as it was only the two of us eating and they were perfect.

    So glad this blog came up in a google search, I cant wait to try basically every single recipe on here lol. Thanks so much 3 tummies for such a lovingly crafted food blog!

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  50. Lovely recipe! How would you suggest using the leftover broth? It is alot left after serving it with rice.

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  51. Thanks Jess! I hope you like the result.
    For the leftover broth have a look at this recipe http://3hungrytummies.blogspot.com/2011/07/aromatic-soy-braised-pork-belly-with.html

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  52. This is definitely a keeper! The chicken was so tasty and juicy! (Though I need to improve on the way I chopped up the chicken) It's not easy getting fresh pork where I am so I didn't try that recipe, instead I froze the broth and used them over the last 2 months when making noodle soup and stir fry, they were delicious! Thanks again for this great recipe!

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  53. I am planning on making this but I'm a bit confused: the directions say to marinate the chicken in soy and aromatics - does this mean the same soy and aromatics used for the poaching liquor? If so, how do the soy and aromatics then make it into the poaching liquor? If not, what are the ingredients and amounts for the marinade? Thanks in advance for you help (love your site!!)

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    Replies
    1. you can just marinate the chicken with 2 tbs of dark soy to give the final result a nicer colour otherwise you may omit that stage. the aromatics can be reuse for the poaching liquor again of course , happy cooking

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    2. Thanks so much for your fast reply!

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  55. Hello! I've been searching for soy chicken recipes online and found your blog - love the mouthwatering recipes and really appreciate the gorgeous photography!

    I followed your recipe to a T but somehow just couldn't achieve the even toned, perfectly brown chicken skin. Mine turns out really patchy, with some darker/lighter spots. I just can't put my finger on what I might be doing wrong..could it be something to do with the type of chicken I use? I've used free range chicken from my local butcher.. Or does the chicken need any prepping, e.g drying it, piercing skin etc? Grateful for any suggestions!

    Cheers!

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  56. I have been looking for this recipe for ever. It is made in my local Chinatown under the name Fragrant Chicken but I could never find it. Then a search for the two ingredients I knew were in it and it comes up on the first page. They look exactly the same. Now I can make my favourite dish at home!

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  57. Thanks for sharing this wonderful and authentic recipe! It's my Keeper recipe! Since there is only 2 of us, I made another recipe of yours - Rice noodle soup with Soy sauce poached chicken. Soo good!! We can't decide which we like better! :)
    Here is a pic of my chicken - http://i260.photobucket.com/albums/ii13/sspaks64/image-118.jpg

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