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Evil Jungle Chicken (or Tofu)

Fabulous Thai dish that you may have eaten in a restaurant. (I used to eat Evil Jungle Tofu at Thai Kum Koon, a local Thai restaurant, all the time.) It is every bit as easy to make at home, though! This is my own version, which has a few more veggies than the ones I've seen in restaurants. I created this recipe to mimic the flavor of the Thai restaurant specialty without having to drive into the city to the Asian market, which means that in place of traditional Thai ingredients, I've substituted ones that are easier to find here.

A note: Often you can get away with chopping as you cook... I highly recommend having all of your ingredients chopped, zested, and ready before you start cooking!

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25
Servings: 6

Ingredients
  • 2 cups white rice

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil

  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into thin bite-size strips or firm tofu, drained and diced

  • 2 medium carrots, cut into matchsticks

  • 1 large red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks

  • 8 mushrooms, stems removed and caps sliced thinly

  • 1 medium zucchini, cut into matchsticks

  • 1 medium white onion, sliced into thin wedges

  • 4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped

  • 2-4 serrano chiles (unless you have access to Thai red chiles - then use 2-4 of those) or more if you like it hotter

  • zest of 2 lemons (or 4 lemon balm leaves) combined with an inch-long piece of fresh ginger, minced (if you have access to lemongrass, use 1 stalk fresh or frozen in place of the lemon/balm + ginger)

  • zest of 2 limes (unless you have access to kaffir lime leaves then use 8-16 leaves)

  • 20 basil leaves

  • 2 cloves garlic

  • 1 can coconut milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon tamari or soy sauce

  • 1-4 tablespoons fish sauce (or homemade Mock Fish Sauce, see below), to taste

  • 2 cups finely shredded cabbage


Directions

Cook rice according to package directions.

Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté chicken or tofu, carrot, bell pepper, mushrooms, zucchini, onion, and 4 cloves of the garlic until chicken is done and vegetables are tender.

While sautéing, process chiles, remaining 2 cloves of garlic, lemon zest/lemon balm + ginger (or lemon grass), lime zest (or kaffir lime leaves), and basil leaves in food processor until you have a paste.

Add chile paste to skillet and sauté another 2-3 minutes. Stir in the coconut milk and cook another 7-8 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium-low and stir in tamari and fish sauce. Simmer until it seems ready. Serve on a bed of chopped cabbage with rice on the side.

Mock Fish Sauce

Not fermented like the real thing, so it won't keep as long and will need to be refrigerated.

Prep: 2 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes

Ingredients
  • 1/2 can anchovies, drained

  • 1 clove garlic, bruised and peeled

  • 1/4 teaspoon brown sugar

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup water


Directions

Combine all in saucepan. Simmer for 10 minutes and strain.
thesoupfairy: (Default)
The Soup Fairy

October 2012

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