Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Ginger Asian Chicken Stew

This dish came to me out of necessity really. I got sick; thus I wanted soup. I also didn't have very much chicken stock left in the freezer so I had to make do with less. Feel free to turn this into a full-fledged soup if you want. I tend to like my soups packed full of vegetables so they always turn out more like stews instead.

1/2 in square piece of fresh ginger (just approximate it)
1 clove garlic
4 -6 oz pre-cooked chicken breast
1/2 tsp sesame oil
cold pressed coconut oil for stir-frying
8 ice cubes of homemade chicken broth (about 3/4 cup)
2 oz chopped onion (or green onion)
1-2 large carrots
1.5 baby bok choy plants
assorted vegetables (I used celery and portobellos) seaweed and brassicas are also good add ins.
optional: soy sauce, shichimi togarashi, cayenne pepper (to clear out the sinuses)

Overall time ~45 minutes

Round up all of your vegetables and chop them. I like to keep the bok choy leaves whole. I just like the texture.

Peel garlic and ginger and chop them up into very small pieces.

Put about 2 tsp coconut oil into a soup pot. I used a deep dish pan and it was difficult. Don't do what I did! Then add garlic and ginger over medium low heat and stir fry until fragrant.

Add chopped veggies and turn up the heat to medium.

Now it is time to pseudo stir-fry in a soup pot! When you stir fry vegetables normally you want to cook them at a very high heat so they retain their crunch. Here we want more of a mushy soup texture to our vegetables, so we will cook them over a lower heat for longer. However what I really like about stir-fry is the browning that it does to the vegetables. Luckily this can still be achieved at lower temperatures. In order to get some nice browning on your vegetables you need to walk away from the stove. Get your stirring in at the beginning to coat all of the vegetables with oil. Then don't touch them for about 2-3 minutes. Now it is time to flip/stir them once and repeat. You should see a brown color on your vegetables start to appear. Do this until the carrots are the desired texture (taste them to see since they take the longest to cook)

When your vegetables are nearly done chop up some pre-cooked chicken into pieces. I had some left over from a previous meal.

Stir chicken into vegetables and let it warm up for a few minutes.

Turn back to low heat and add chicken broth ice cubes to quench the cooking.

Add spices and sesame oil. Cover and let simmer for about 15 minutes.

Serve hot. I like to eat stew with chop sticks. It lets me pick up the bok choy easily and I get to slurp the broth straight from the bowl. Storing extra stew only makes the flavors of the dish deepen and mix together over time. I think it tastes best the next day.