I've found a recipe for this dish in a tiny cook book "Vietnamese Favourites", which my sister brought with her from Vietnam.
I've found the dish description so tempting, that I've decided to test it in my kitchen.
Well, I really don't know if this dish really belongs to Vietnamese Favourites but definitely, it is one of favourites in my family.
I've added my two cents (of course :)) and changed the recipe a little but without interfering with the dish structure and it's original character.
Makes 2 servings
- 3 tbsp canola oil
- 1 onion (large), cut into half-slices
- 500 grams chicken tighs (skin off, bone removed), cut into thiner slices
- 1 tbsp garlic, chopped
- 5 cm fresh ginger, cut into thin juliene
- 1 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 1/2 tsp "5 Spice" mixture
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 chili, sliced or chopped
- 2 tbsp green onion, green part sliced, for garnish
- fresh corriander leaves
Cut the chicken tights into thiner slices. Mix them with 1 tbsp dark soy sauce and let them marinate for at least 30 minutes.
Heat the oil in a wok.
When it is very hot, add onion and fry for about 2 minutes until translucent and frangrant.
Add chicken tights and fry a few more minutes until golden and caramelised.
Add ginger and garlic and fry 30 seconds.
Reduce the heat, add "5 Spice" blend, light soy sauce, fish sauce and honey. Fry for additional 3 minutes until the sauce thicken and cover the chicken.
To be sure that chicken is cooked through, you can cover the wok with the lid, and cook everything on the small heat for a few more minutes.
Add lemon juice and part of the chili. Check the seasoning.
Transfer to a serving plate. Garnish with spring onion, chili and fresh corriander leaves.
Serve with a steamed rice.
"5 Spice" is a basic mixture used in Chinese cooking. It reflects a balance between 5 basic flavours: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and spicy.
Usually it is made of: star anise, cloves, cinnamon, fennel and sichuan pepper, but every maker has his own proportions of these ingredients.
Ready to buy mixture is available in stores with Oriental food or even in supermarkets.