On a chilly nighttime good-for-nothing heateds you up like blisteringly hot Chinese-style chicken, served with a cooling back of herby salad, says Nigel Slater
There was a bit of a commotion of aniseed, soy and ginger-scented fix in the kitchen last week, as there often is when I have had one of my irregular trip-ups to Chinatown. These are the trip-ups where I return home with armfuls of bottles and containers, mainly red.
I precisely required, virtually prayed, the smell of oyster sauce to warm up a kitchen changed ice-cold by a dodgy thermostat. Leafy commons, bok choy and mustard dark-greens are regularly steamed and threshed with thick-witted, glossy oyster sauce at home, but flesh and fish rather less so.
I threshed paunch, free-range chicken thighs with crushed garlic, sugar, chilli and oyster sauce and cooked them on a freeze night when merely something blisteringly, eye-wateringly hot would hit the spot. It wasnt something that could bask under the label of authenticity it was just what I needed at that moment. The chicken rose lustrous, gently crispy and very hot. It sizzled as we ingest, becoming our cheeks tingle. We gave the burn out with a sour citrus salad.
There was a big pudding, extremely, the sort of roasted butterscotch sponge occasion, with ointment, butter and sugar, that only ever comes out in the very depths of winter. Disaster cooking for the cold and hungry.
Oyster sauce chicken with citrus batch salad
Check the chicken regularly, crossing it with foil if it is browning too much.
chicken thighs 6
For the marinade:
garlic 3 huge cloves
onion 1, medium sized
oyster sauce 100 ml
light soy sauce 4 tbsp
honey 3 tbsp
chilli sauce 3 tbsp
For the salad:
fish sauce 2 tsp
caster carbohydrate 1 tbsp
lime juice 2 tbsp
plenty leaves 10
coriander leaves a large handful
chilli 1, medium-sized
pink grapefruit 1
cashews 2 handful, cooked and salted
To form the marinade peel the garlic then suppresses the cloves to a adhesive applying a pestle and mortar and a pinch of salt. Make the paste into a large desegregating bowl. Peel the onion, cut it in half and chopper it very finely. Compound with the garlic.
Put the oyster and soy sauces, the honey and the chilli sauce into the mixing container and incite thoroughly. Push the chicken pieces into the marinade, alter them over and leave in a cool region for an hour or two.
Set the oven at 180 C/ gas mark 4. Place the chicken pieces into a nonstick roasting tin, spoon over half the marinade and home in the preheated oven. Roast for 45 minutes, basting once or twice with the remaining marinade, and regularly checking their change. Cover the roasting tin with foil if necessary.
To form the salad, combine the fisheries sector sauce, caster carbohydrate and lime juice in a small container. Roughly chop or tear the mint buds and add to the container, together with the coriander leaves. Finely chop the chilli and add to the dressing.
Slice the ends from the grapefruit, plaza it flat on the chopping board then slice away the peel and white pith a sharp-worded kitchen bayonet. Remove the some part of tissue from the surface. Introduce the grapefruit into the clothing and leave for 10 instants before lending the cashew nuts and serving.