Tuesday 6 October 2015

Chicken in Oyster Sauce 蠔油鸡

I envisioned my mom to be the greatest cook on earth when I was a child. Chicken in Oyster Sauce 蠔油鸡 was one such dish that I really looked forward to in my childhood days. My mom cooked it so tastily that I thought I could never do it myself. 

It was many years later that I realized this traditional Chinese family dish could be achieved by a perfect balance of savouriness and sweetness, plus fragrance from aromatic ingredients and generous dash of sesame oil. 

Chicken in Oyster Sauce 蠔油鸡 - It's really not so difficult....

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Ingredients (enough for 4 pax with steamed rice) :

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  • 1/2 kampung chicken/free range chicken  (chopped to pieces)(pre-marinate with a little salt and sesame oil)
  • 4 potatoes (cut to quarters)(pre-boiled)
  • 1 yellow onion (chopped to rings or thin slices)
  • 3 slices ginger 
  • 5 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
  • parsley (for garnishing)
  • cooking oil

Seasonings : 

  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar or to taste
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp grounded white pepper
  • 1 tbsp corn/potato starch flour
  • 50 ml water

(tsp = teaspoon; tbsp = tablespoon)    

Tip : Boil potatoes for 10 to 15 minutes before stir frying.

Method :

Heat cooking oil in skillet/wok.
Add aromatic ingredients in sequence : ginger, yellow onions, garlic. Lightly sauté.
Remove aromatic ingredients when they turn light golden brown. Set aside.
Toss in pre-boiled potatoes. Sauté till they turn light golden brown.
Remove potatoes and set aside.
Heat cooking oil in skillet/wok again.
Fold in marinated chicken pieces at medium-high heat. 
Meanwhile, get ready seasonings by combining salt, sugar, oyster sauce, sesame oil, grounded white pepper. Stir well and fold in to skillet/wok.
Fold in aromatic ingredients and potatoes again.
Stir fry 2 to 3 minutes. Mix 1 tbsp corn/potato flour with 50 ml water and fold in. Toss all ingredients till chicken pieces and potatoes nicely coated with sauce. Simmer for 10  to 15 minutes at medium heat. Sauce would be cooked down gradually. Add 1 tsp of sesame oil before serve.
Transfer to serving bowl when ready.

Chicken in Oyster Sauce 蠔油鸡 - a simple Chinese home-cooked dish that many of us grew up with.


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