This is a everyday twist to a classic Cantonese chicken dish called 白切雞 or literally translated as “Plain Cut Chicken”. It’s poaching or steaming a whole chicken with minimal spices, then chopped into bite size and served with the same minced ginger sauce in this recipe. The reason I developed this version is to avoid cutting through the bones of a whole chicken which I find quite messy to perform and dangerous to serve with potential broken bones everywhere.
The poaching method is my go-to method to cook chicken these days as it’s healthy and keeps the chicken very moist. It’s very versatile too so you can pre-poached the chicken to leave in the fridge then shred it later for salad or noodle soup if you want a quick snack or lunch. I try to avoid reheating the chicken though so it doesn’t lose it’s wonderful texture from the poaching process.
The minced ginger sauce or ginger pesto is also a wonderfully versatile sauce. Traditionally served with many types of chicken dishes in Hong Kong, I grew up eating this with rice in BBQ diners and restaurants. However, I started to think why just limit this to chicken and rice? I have so far tried mixing the sauce with drained egg noodles for a vegetarian dish and even spread it over toast for breakfast. I love how they both turn out so will continue to explore new ways to use this ginger pesto sauce. Do share in the comments if you have ideas.
Preparation, plus cooking: 35 min | Level: Easy
List of ingredients for easy copy and pasting:
- 2 organic chicken breasts, boneless and skinless (roughly ~1lb)
- 1/4″ (~ 2 slices) fresh ginger root
- 1 Tbsp Chinese Shaohsing rice wine
- 1 star anise
- 1 tsp Szechuan peppercorns
For the minced ginger sauce:
- 2 Tbsp freshly grated ginger root
- 1 spring onion
- 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar (optional)
- 2 Tbsp dark soy sauce (optional)