Sous Vide Soy Sauce Chicken
1 whole chicken (remove organs)
3 slices of fresh ginger, julienned
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
3 stalks of scallions, cut into 2" pieces
2 star anise
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon Shao Xing wine
1 teaspoon white pepper powder
1/4 cup sugar
3 cups water
Special tools: Chamber vacuum, heavy meat clever
This is a dish my mother made and everyone loved. I decided to try to make it using the sous vide method! A new twist on an old recipe. Hopefully my mother will be proud.
Pre-heat the water bath to 148ºF. Mix all ingredients except the chicken in a large bowl making sure the sugar dissolved into the mixture. You will need a large plastic cooking bag that is large enough to hold the whole chicken and all the liquid. Also since we are going to cook the chicken in the soy sauce liquid mixture, it works best if you have a chamber vacuum sealer. If you only have a bar sealer, you might have to seal it twice to get a good seal since some of the liquid will probably get caught in the seal area. Drape the bag over the counter edge when you're sealing (for a bar sealer).
Place the whole chicken in the bag neck first so the cavity hole is exposed. Pour the soy sauce mixture into the bag, making sure you fill the cavity. Carefully place the bag in the chamber vacuum and seal the bag. Set the vacuum seal pressure to a low setting. Some of the liquid may come out as the bag is sealed. Just wipe the bag off around the seal area and re-seal a second time if necessary to get a complete seal. The chicken should be immersed in the soy sauce mixture within the bag. Place the bag in the water bath. Cook for 5 hours. This ensures the whole chicken gets cooked.
Once the chicken is done, remove from the water bath and let stand in the bag for 10 minutes. Get out a large cutting board and a heavy meat clever. This will be used to cut the chicken up into small pieces with the bone in, a traditional method of presenting soy sauce chicken. Also this dish is normally served at room temperature or even cold. Take the chicken out of the bag. Reserve some of the liquid for sauce. Separate the legs and wings from the body at the joints. Using your clever, CAREFULLY chop the legs and wings into small pieces, chopping right through the bones. BE CAREFUL! Now separate the breasts from the backbone part of the chicken by slicing horizontally from the bottom of the chicken to the neck area. You can then separate the breasts by cutting down through the breast bone. Again, carefully use your clever to cut the breasts into small pieces.
For plating, place the dark meat on a large plate and then place the breast meat on top. Garnish with scallions and server!
My Mother used to make a fairly famous Chinese dish when I was growing up.... Soy Sauce Chicken. It was wonderful warm or cold! I recreated this dish using the new sous vide cooking technique. Hope mom is proud!
December 18, 2011