Ying's ideas of easy Chinese home-cooking

Japanese style Tomato and Chicken Stew

日式番茄雞肉煮

About 15 years ago when I studied in Scotland, I had similar dish for the first time. My closest schoolmate at that time was a kind and humble Japanese girl. Both of us loved cooking and shared culinary skills. Then I knew there was a genre of Japanese cuisine called ‘Yōshoku’, Japanese-western food, which was western-influenced Japanese cooking.

I had the saury version of this summery tomato stew she made. It was so tasty and I tried using mackerel many times also. These two fish are two of the most popular fish in Japan. However I couldn’t find fresh saury in the local fishmonger nowadays and my pal doesn’t like bony fish, so I use chicken in this recipe.

For the tomato sauce, you can use canned sauce. But actually homemade tomato sauce is so simple and much healthier. Just to stir-fry tomato dices in olive oil patiently till it slowly reduces. Hot oil can not only produce richer colour and taste, but can help to release more lycopene from tomato. Research suggest that intestinal absorption of lycopene is enhanced by the presence of fat and by cooking. Tomato is particularly dense, sweet and red in summer, so I even make jars of tomato sauce and seal with olive oil.

Ingredients – for 2 serving

  • Boneless chicken thighs, 2 pieces, about 500g
  • Tomato, 3, 500g
  • Canned chickpeas, 1/2 cup
  • Spinach leaves, a handful
  • Olive, 6
  • Garlic, 3
  • Ginger, 10g
  • Dry basil flakes, 1/2tsp
  • Paprika, 1/2tsp
  • Light soy sauce, 1tsp
  • Salt, 1/2tsp
  • Sugar, 1tsp
  • Black pepper, 1/2tsp
  • Cornstarch, 1tsp

How to do –
1. Boneless chicken thighs cut in bite size chunks, and I would prefer with skin. Marinate the chicken with 1tsp of soy sauce, 1/2tsp of salt, 1tsp of sugar, 1/2tsp of black pepper, and 1tsp of cornstarch, mix well;

2. Tomato peeled or unpeeled, cut into small dices just like how you cut onion, better with a sharp and thin knife;

3. In a hot wok, heat 2tbsp of olive oil then put in the tomato, stir-fry in medium-high heat, be patient and the tomato will be reduced gradually, lower to medium heat, keep stir-frying till the colour turns richer, and the amount of tomato would be reduced to 1/5 of its original quantity;

4. While the tomato is in the wok, in another pan, pan-fry the chicken chunks till golden;

5. Back in the tomato sauce, chickpeas drained, garlic and ginger mashed, and also put in 1/2tsp of basil and paprika, mix well; Pour in 1cup of water, and the chicken, lid on, bring to boil in high heat then simmer in medium heat for 10 minutes;

6. Have a taste, you may season with a nip of salt and sugar. But don’t reduce the sauce too much, it would be lovely to go with steamed rice. Put in spinach and olive, bring to boil then heat off;

7. Serve with steamed short-grain rice, and a few drops of lemon juice would be even refresher; I make quick Japanese spinach salad with the leftover spinach. Spinach poached in boiling water, drained, squeezed, then season with Japanese sesame dressing.

用料

  • 去骨鸡腿肉 2块,约500克(2人份)
  • 番茄 3大个,500克
  • 罐头水煮鹰嘴豆 半量杯
  • 菠菜叶 1把
  • 橄榄 6颗
  • 蒜 3粒
  • 姜 10克
  • 罗勒末 半茶匙
  • 红椒粉 半茶匙
  • 酱油 1茶匙
  • 盐 半茶匙
  • 糖 1茶匙
  • 现磨黑胡椒末 半茶匙
  • 太白粉 1茶匙

做法

  1. 鸡肉切成适口的大小,腌渍一下。1茶匙生抽、半茶匙盐、1茶匙糖、半茶匙黑胡椒末、1茶匙生粉,搅拌均匀;
  2. 番茄可以削皮或不削皮,切成小丁。先朝下纵横切片但不要切断,再打侧切断成丁,像切洋葱粒那样,切这种偏软多汁的蔬果最好用锋利的薄刀;
  3. 热锅放2汤匙橄榄油,热油炒过的番茄才能析出更多茄红素。先用中大火炒出水份,再转中火翻炒。炒好的茄酱大约只剩下五分之一的量,颜色变得浓郁鲜艳,酸味降低,番茄味浓郁;
  4. 炒茄酱的同时可以用另一个锅把鸡肉煎至两面金黄;
  5. 茄酱里放入鹰嘴豆,蒜头压蓉,姜压出汁,放半茶匙罗勒末和红椒末,拌匀; 放入一量杯水,放入鸡肉,盖锅用中火煮10分钟;
  6. 尝一尝味,可以适当加一点糖和盐调味。不要把汁收得太干,留点汁水用来拌饭。放入橄榄粒和菠菜叶。煮沸后即可关火;
  7. 盛盘,淋一点柠檬汁更清香;
  8. 剩下的菠菜焯水,放凉,用手挤走水份,淋上日式芝麻酱。

Japanese style Tomato and Chicken Stew

日式番茄雞肉煮

Preparation time: 30mins
Serving: 2

Ingredients

boneless chicken thigh 500g

tomato 500g

canned chickpeas 1/2cup

spinach leaves 1handful

olive 6

garlic 3

ginger 10g

dry basil flakes 1/2tsp

paprika 1/2tsp

light soy sauce 1tsp

salt 1/2tsp

sugar 1tsp

black pepper 1/2tsp

cornstarch 1tsp

Instructions

1.Boneless chicken thighs cut in bite size chunks, and I would prefer with skin. Marinate the chicken with 1tsp of soy sauce, 1/2tsp of salt, 1tsp of sugar, 1/2tsp of black pepper, and 1tsp of cornstarch, mix well;

2.Tomato peeled or unpeeled, cut into small dices just like how you cut onion, better with a sharp and thin knife;

3.In a hot wok, heat 2tbsp of olive oil then put in the tomato, stir-fry in medium-high heat, be patient and the tomato will be reduced gradually, lower to medium heat, keep stir-frying till the colour turns richer, and the amount of tomato would be reduced to 1/5 of its original quantity;

4.While the tomato is in the wok, in another pan, pan-fry the chicken chunks till golden;

5.Back in the tomato sauce, chickpeas drained, garlic and ginger mashed, and also put in 1/2tsp of basil and paprika, mix well; Pour in 1cup of water, and the chicken, lid on, bring to boil in high heat then simmer in medium heat for 10 minutes;

6.Have a taste, you may season with a nip of salt and sugar. But don’t reduce the sauce too much, it would be lovely to go with steamed rice. Put in spinach and olive, bring to boil then heat off;

7.Serve with steamed short-grain rice, and a few drops of lemon juice would be even refresher.

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