Recipe: soy sauce chicken
Hrm, some recent developments might require that I curtail the posting frequency. Not sure. We’ll see how it goes in the next few weeks.
A few folks have inquired about the lunch I had in this entry, so I figured I should write it up seeing as it is a great dish in cold weather months.
Chinese noodle soups in my mind are as versatile as sandwiches. You can put whatever you want in them. I think of it in terms of a few major components: the noodles, the broth, the fixins. Noodles can be bean thread (aka glass noodles), soba, somen, iron man, ramen, rice noodles, and the list goes on. The broth is whatever you want it to be. The fixins can be vegetables, meat, leftover stir-fry, delicious spicy chili radishes (my fav!)…
We’ll start with one of my standards: soy sauce chicken. It’s just chicken drumsticks simmered for a few hours, but what you get is chicken and a lovely aromatic broth.
ginger, green onions, sugar, star anise
I like using organic chicken. If you’ve ever made broth from organic chicken and from conventional chicken, the fats are completely different. When I refrigerate the broth to remove the fat, the conventional chicken is practically a yellow disc of fat whereas the organic chicken renders an almost colorless and slightly liquid fat.
layer the chicken and add the rest of the ingredients
The star anise adds a nice accent to the soy sauce base. Simmer for a couple of hours or until the chicken is falling off the bone.
chicken is done
Usually, after the chicken is cooked, I remove the drumsticks from the broth and chuck the skins and bone. I store the chicken meat in a tupperware. The broth is poured into a bowl or tupperware and refrigerated for defatting. Now on to noodles. My favorite noodles (almost a comfort food, really) are Japanese somen noodles.
and this is the brand i buy
My grandmother used to make these noodles for me when I was a little girl. They cook in no time flat, so be sure they don’t turn too soggy (like a couple of minutes). I prefer to boil them in water rather than the broth because the noodles tend to make the broth starchy and the whole thing is just too salty. Once the noodles are cooked, drain them and place in a bowl.
delicate, thin somen
In the same pot I just used, I’ll heat up some of the broth with a little water (it’s somewhat concentrated broth). When it comes to a boil I chuck in pieces of the chicken along with greens – my favorite being spinach.
pot o’ flavor
Pour the contents over the noodles. If I’m feeling decadent, I’ll add a poached egg (runnnnnny) and I always top the whole thing off with some spicy chili radishes. That bowl will take your energy into the wee hours, really.
Soy Sauce Chicken
4-6 chicken drums (organic is preferable)
4-5 stalks green onions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
8 slices ginger root, peeled
2-3 whole star anise
2/3 cup soy sauce
2 tbsps sugar
enough water to cover the chicken
Place all ingredients in a pan with a tight lid (or use a crockpot). Bring to boil and then reduce to a simmer so that when you cover the pot, the liquid will not boil over. Simmer for 2 hours. I like to remove the bone and skin from the chicken and serve the meat with the broth over Chinese noodles with bok choy, napa cabbage, or spinach for a Chinese noodle soup.