Poaching ensures wonderful moist chicken, which is the centrepiece of this dish.
Chicken fillets seem to have grown in size over the past few years with some weighing almost 500g. Try and buy them around 200g each, otherwise you will have to adjust the cooking time.
Difficulty: Easy Time: 10 minutes prep, 15 minutes to cook Serves: 4
- 4 x 200g chicken breast fillets, trimmed, skin off, at room temperature
For the poaching liquid
- small tin coconut milk, 270ml
- 1 cup water or chicken stock
- 1 stalk lemongrass, just use the pale bottom part only, roughly chopped
- knob of fresh ginger, sliced
- 3 kaffir lime leaves, optional
- 1 long red chilli, halved, seeded and sliced
- splash fish sauce
- 1 tbs palm sugar, grated, or use the liquid variety readily available in jars in supermarkets
- coriander root and stem, finely chopped
To cook the chicken, combine all the poaching liquid ingredients in a saucepan large enough to fit the chicken fillets. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
Add the chicken fillets and press a piece of baking on the surface.
Simmer for 8 minutes, turn the fillets over and cook for another 2 minutes.
Take the pan off the heat, the chicken will finish cooking in the hot liquid. Leave for another 5 minutes.
If the fillets are larger than 200g, you will need to leave them a little longer. They should feel firm, but still have a little ‘give’, when pressed.
Remove the chicken from the cooking liquid, and rest before slicing thinly across the grain.
For the salad
- 1 bunch watercress, picked into sprigs, washed, dried
- 300g snowpeas, blanched
- 1-2 bunches asparagus, trimmed, blanched, sliced on the diagonal
- 1 lebanese cucumber, halved lengthways, deseeded, sliced on diagonal
- handful carrot, juillened
- handful red capscium, finely sliced
- 4-6 shallots, sliced on diagonal
- 1/2 bunch coriander leave
- handful Thai basil leaves, optional
For the dressing
- 3 tbs fish sauce
- 3 tbs white vinegar
- 2 tbs sugar
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/2 long red chilli, thinly sliced
- 2tbs lime juice
Put the fish sauce, vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan with 125ml water. Place over medium heat, and stir well and bring to just below boiling point. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Just before serving, stir in the garlic and chilli and lime juice.
Store in a screw-top jar in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- 100g roasted, chopped peanuts
- coriander leaves
- Crispy Fried Asian shallots ( available in jars in most supermarkets)