12/26/2009

Boxing Day dinner

Alright, there's nothing really significant about Boxing Day for us to have a special dinner. I just decided that "Boxing Day dinner" sounds better than just "Dinner" as the title. :D

Anyway, today we had Chinese food. I cooked stir-fried xiao bai cai in abalone sauce, prawns with hei bi hiam (made by my mum), assam and garlic and herbal chicken soup. The dinner was just heavenly especially on a cold, rainy day like today. Who wouldn't fancy a plate of crunchy, savoury greens and a spicy and sour dish to perk up one's senses and a piping hot bowl of herbal soup on such a day? =)


Here're my dishes!


Herbal Chicken Soup



Stir-fried xiao bai cai in abalone sauce


Prawns fried with hei bi hiam, assam and garlic



These are the herbs I used for the herbal chicken soup:



You can cut down on the amount of ginseng roots if you don't like it too bitter.
I've always loved herbal chicken soup and I went through a phase of searching for herbal chicken at every foodcourt I went to. During the craze, I took note of the herbs that I found in the food and so, here's my concoction and I believe it's a rather common combination of herbs! :)
Herbal Chicken Soup
Ingredients:
  • 4 chicken thighs (skin removed, washed and visible fats removed)
  • ginseng roots (人參)
  • chinese yam (huai shan - 淮山)
  • Solomon's seal (yu zhu - 玉竹)
  • dried red dates (cored) (紅棗)
  • wolfberries (枸杞子)
Method:
  1. Soak yu zhu in room temperature water before cooking.
  2. Blanch the cleaned chicken thighs in boiling water.
  3. Put all the herbs (except the wolfberries) and the chicken into a claypot and put enough water to cover all the ingredients.
  4. Boil on high heat for 1 hour.
  5. Simmer on low heat for 1 more hour after that.
  6. Add wolfberries in at the 1.5hr mark.
  7. Add salt to taste.

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