Just a few blog posts ago, I was complaining much ado about chicken breasts.
Well, it seemed like I found my favourite application -- because it is the simplest and easiest, all those things that we lazypeople like -- of said cut of meat.
Hello, Hunanese salted chiles. Where have you been all my life?
I thought the peppers would undergo a more dramatic metamorphosis, at least in terms of flavor. But, no big surprise, they tasted like salty chiles! ;)
This is really a no-brainer kind of dish. Take chicken meat, cut into chunks or slice thinly (whichever mood strikes me that day), add minced ginger, add salted chiles. Steam until done. Add green onions on top and serve.
Well, according to Fuchsia's recipe, it still had a little "brainer", with instructions on blanching the chicken first before steaming it. But really, with breasts, there's no need for that.
Another thing, if we didn't have all those breasts to use up, I would like this better with various bone-in chicken parts, chopped into small pieces. (Or not chopped, seeing as we're lazy, after all.)
I must say we've made this more than a couple of times -- and on some occasions, I don't even bother with the ginger and the green onions.
With the ginger and green onions, it tasted like having steamed chicken with that Chinese ginger-green onion sauce with which some people may be familiar. (Well, duh.) But spicy!
The salted chiles lend such wonderful flavour dimensions, adding salty, spicy, and a very slight pickly-fermented sourishness, to the bland chicken breast meat.
I'm content with a bowl of rice, some chunks of chicken with salted chiles on top, and stir-fried green leafies on the side.
eatingclub Hunan dishes
Hunanese Chopped Salted Chiles (剁辣椒)
Mao's Hunan Red-Braised Pork (毛氏紅燒肉)
Steamed Red-Braised Pork with Pickled Mustard Greens (酸菜蒸紅燒肉)
Hunanese Stir-fried Eggs with Green Peppers
Hunanese Steamed Chicken with Salted Chiles (剁辣椒蒸雞)
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Steamed Chicken with Chopped Salted Chiles (剁辣椒蒸雞)
adapted from Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook: Recipes from Hunan Province
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, or boneless dark meat, or bone-in leg and thigh
1-inch piece ginger, sliced or julienned
1 Tbsp. Shaoxing wine
1 1/2 Tbsp chopped salted chiles
1 green onion (white and green parts), chopped
salt, to taste
To make chopped salted chiles, click here for recipe.
Cut the chicken into bite-size chunks. Place the chicken in a heatproof bowl with the ginger, Shaoxing wine, chopped green onions and salted chiles. Mix well. You may not need to add extra salt, as the chiles can be quite salty.
Place bowl in a steamer and steam over high heat for 20-30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.