Thursday, November 10, 2011

One-Pot Chinese Chicken is the latest
Donna Hay recipe to amaze and impress

It’s only taken three of Donna Hay’s recipes to convince me she is a genius.
   She’s amazingly clever at creating dishes that are super-easy and quick to make, but deliver on flavor.
   And they’re often family-friendly.
   The Australian cookbook author and lifestyle expert’s latest cookbook (available in North America, anyway) is Fast, Fresh, Simple.
   The recipe from the book I tried most recently is One-Pot Chinese Chicken (click for the recipe). Once again, I was impressed with Hay’s ability to streamline the preparation process of the dish to make it seem effortless.
   This is the ideal recipe for those of you leading such harried lives that cooking and enjoying a decent meal is like winning the lottery.
   Everything really is made in one pot, and there are only a few things to chop. Because everything needs to cook for at least 20 minutes, there is time to clean up the dishes and utensils you already used, leaving just a few dishes to clean up afterward.
   If you leave the green onions and coriander off the portions being served to children, I think this dish certainly falls into the family-friendly category. Make sure to take out the pieces of ginger, garlic and green chili from young folks’ servings, too.
   For adults, be sure to sprinkle soy sauce and green onions on the servings as the recipe says – they add nice sharp shots of flavour. And, if you’re like us and you hate coriander (cilantro), use parsley instead.
   If you double the recipe, it will easily serve four, but it will require more cooking time. The best way to know if it is ready is by checking to see when the rice has absorbed all the chicken stock.
   We used a jalapeno pepper for the green chilli listed in the recipe, making sure to take out the seeds and white insides before using it to reduce its heat. Chicken thigh fillets are the same as boneless, skinless chicken thighs, but be sure to weigh the correct amount required with a kitchen scale before using them.
   We used a stock pot instead of a frying pan.
   Chicken stock (we used store-bought chicken broth), sliced ginger, garlic, and a green chili are placed in the pot over high heat and brought to a boil.
   Jasmine rice and sliced chicken thighs are added to the stock, and the mixture is covered. The heat is reduced to low (we set it at about 2.5), covered, and cooked for at least 20 minutes or until the rice has absorbed the stock and the chicken is tender.

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