I made a chicken stew today, a recipe adapted from Leong Yee Soo's "Best of Singapore Cooking" cookbook. It is interesting to note the ingredients and preparation method that she used in her cookbook. The preparation is always quite elaborate, add ingredients A, B, C, D and E...etc, and this level of details and elaborateness are quite typical for peranakan/straits chinese cooking. But the results are always well worth the effort. :)
I love Leong Yee Soo's cookbook, but there is a trick if you want to make good use of her recipes. You always have to do away with the msg (why is there msg in the first place, I wonder?) and reduce the amount of salt by half. I suppose people of the older generation are used to salty food. :)
So here is my adaptation of her chinese chicken stew recipe.
Chinese Chicken Stew
1 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 big potatoes, cut into blocks
1 tsp peppercorns
1 carrot, cut into wedges
2 onions, quartered
1 chicken stock cube, mashed
4 shallots, pounded
1 thumb-sized ginger, cut into strips
1 cinnamon stick
1 tsp dark soya sauce
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp water
600g chicken, cut into blocks
2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp butter
3 tomatoes, quartered
1. Marinate chicken in A for 30 min.
2. Boil B in a pot for 10 min.
3. Heat the oil/butter in frying pan and brown C. Remove and set aside.
4. In the same frying pan, add oil/butter, add the marinated chicken and fry til brown on all sides.
5. Mix D in a bowl and add to a big pot together with B (step 2) and C (step 3).
6. Stir and let simmer til the chicken is tender, about 20 min. Add the cut tomatoes and cook for another 5 min. Remove from heat. Serve hot.