Today I’m going to share a very simple old-world home-style Chinese dish that is quick to make, yet complex in flavors. It uses 6 ingredients. My grandma traditionally made this with pork belly, but since Hakka meat stews take a good 2.5-3 hours to make, I’m going to teach you how to make a chicken version that you can whip up in 30 minutes.
SERVES 3-4 people
- 2 back quarter legs (large)
- 250gm arrowroot or calladium, peeled and sliced 1/2 inch thick
- 1/2 bulb of garlic, skin removed and minced
- Fu chung red beancurd
- A tbsp of shaoxing cooking wine, (optional)
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- Clean your chicken legs, by removing the skin and excess fat trimmings. Wash and cut the chicken into 2-inches pieces with the bone in.
- After cutting the chicken, wash the chicken again to remove bone pieces. Be sure to dig and scrape out the shrapnel of bones where the marrow area is, then drain excess water from the chicken.
- Heat a non-stick wok on medium high heat, and add the tbsp of cooking oil. When it is hot, add the garlic and stirfry it. The minced garlic should float and sizzle.
- After about 30 seconds, add you chicken pieces in and fry it, making sure that you sear all sides of the chicken. This is to seal the juices so that your chicken will be tender and juicy.
- Add in 1 1/2 cubes of nam yui (red bean curd), with some of the red yeast rice juice from the jar as well.
- Continue frying the chicken pieces, making sure that the nam yui coats all sides of the chicken. Fry the chicken for about 4-5 minutes in medium high heat.
- Add the arrow root and continue frying, making sure to incorporated evenly between the chicken. Fry it for another 2 minutes on medium high heat.
- When it starts to steam and boil, cover the wok with a lid and reduce the heat to simmer on medium low.
- After 10 minutes, check your chicken and give it a good stir. Close the lid back and simer for another 10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and serve it with white rice and green vegetables.
Note: Chicken Skin – If you like chicken skin, you could leave them on but I remove them for health reasons. Also, if your chicken is very fat, it could make the stew very greasy and oleaginous.
Boneless Chicken – If you don’t like bones in your meat, you could use boneless chicken. You’d want to cut it into chunky bite-sized pieces (about 1x1x2 inches). You’d fry your arrowroot first, then add the chicken after. Without the bone-in, your chicken will cook faster so reduce the cooking time to 10 minutes on medium-low.