Updated: Jul 25
Soy Chicken rice what can I say!! This dish originates from hawkers across Hong Kong, essentially its braised chicken that's hung and roasted flavoured in soy and spices. For my recipe I wanted to make this dish quick and easy yet still maintaining that umami flavour. Usually you would hang a whole lean bird after poaching it in the soy mix leaving it to air dry, followed by roasting, instead I found that straight up braising it then serving, cuts down time although it doesn't get that deep, dark and dry soy skin yet it still is packed with flavour. I will add the method to hanging it also if you want to try it but otherwise here's my quicker version for you, let's get to it!
To serve 4
4 chicken legs
cooked rice for 4
Spring onion oil:
1 bunch of spring onions (green part)
75ml rapeseed oil
1 tbsp minced ginger
90 ml light soy
75 ml dark soy
40 ml honey
150 ml water
2 tbsp sugar
1 bunch of spring onions (white part)
5 dry shiitake mushrooms
1 tbsp szechuan peppercorns
2 garlic cloves
5 star anise
6-10 dry red chillis
1. Let start by making the braise, in a large dry pan add 5 dry shiitake mushrooms, 1 tbsp of Szechuan peppercorns, garlic, sliced ginger, 5 star anise, now chop the white part of the spring onions off and add. Dry fry all the spices on a medium heat until fragrant. Next add 90ml of light soy, 75ml dark soy, 40ml of honey then around 150ml of water. Next turn the heat to high and bring to the boil, then add 2 tbsp sugar and turn the braise down to a simmer removing any impurities that rise to the top.
2. Now onto the chicken, you can either use a whole chicken for this recipe or chicken legs, I used chicken legs for convenience and a quicker cooking time. Coat the raw chicken in a few drops of dark soy to add a little colour, next add the chicken to the braise and let cook on a simmer for around 45 minutes making sure to turnover often to ensure that the chicken will be evenly cooked. If you decide to use a whole chicken, say a medium sized bird then I recommend using a large deep pan making sure all the braise covers the bird and cook for approximately 1 hour 15 minutes size depending.
3. Whilst we are waiting for the chicken to cook now would be a good time to cook the rice, I simply use a rice cooker, washing prior to cooking then covering around half an inch over the the rice with water. If you do not have a rice cooker definitely recommend that you get one, if not simply follow the same instructions above but instead add the rice and water to a pan bring to a boil first, then turn down to a very low simmer with a lid on until cooked.
4. For the spring onion oil start by adding 75ml of rapeseed oil to a pan, then add 1 tbsp minced ginger and fry on a medium to high heat until the ginger becomes fragrant. Finely chop the green part of the spring onion and add to the oil. As soon as you add the spring onions remove the pan from the heat and place into a bowl, next season with salt and leave to cool.
5. When the chicken is cooked we can now serve, remove the chicken from the braise and chop into pieces leaving the bone on, I recommend using a cleaver if possible as it makes it incredibly easy to cut through the bone. Add rice to a bowl , then place the chicken on top and pour over a spoonfull of the braise, finish off by drizzling with the spring oil and devour!
Have fun making this quick and simple dish!
If you have the time, poach the chicken in the braise for around 15 minutes on a high heat, then hang the chicken for 2-3 hours to air dry. Next roast the chicken for around 1 hour at 160 degrees centigrade until cooked. This is a much more traditional approach to soy chicken although it is time consuming. As for the braise I agree it is a lot of soy to use on one dish, therefore I recommend once finished place into a bowl and store in the fridge to keep for a future braise!