After watching Marion’s Thailand on the Food channel, I decided to try her Beggar’s Chicken recipe. As the weather has started getting chillier, this was a great dish to have – fragrant, warming and salty, with nice tender chicken and a delicious broth ladled over steaming rice. Yummy!
It uses coriander roots which is often a part that I discard, but has such a great flavour. Make sure you clean it well. If you need more information on preparing it, have a look here. You don’t need to cut it up though as it gets all mashed up in the mortar and pestle anyway.
6 coriander roots
8 small garlic cloves (about 4 large cloves)
1 tsp whole black peppercorns
¼ tsp sea salt
4 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 whole free-range chicken
1 cup dark soy sauce
3 Tbsp fish sauce, plus extra to taste
3 whole star anise
2 cinnamon sticks
2 tsp sugar
¼ cup coriander leaves
1 long red chilli, finely sliced
Use a mortar and pestle to pound coriander roots, garlic, peppercorns and salt to a rough paste (you could also do this in a food processor).
Heat oil in a pot just large enough to hold the chicken. Fry paste for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the whole chicken and lightly brown for about 2 minutes per side. Add dark soy sauce, fish sauce, star anise and cinnamon sticks. Pour in enough water to almost cover the chicken. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down to medium-low, cover and simmer for 60 minutes, turning the chicken over halfway through cooking.
Carefully remove chicken and place into a deep serving dish. To the broth, add fish sauce to taste and sugar. Pour broth over chicken and garnish with coriander leaves and sliced chillies. Serve with steamed rice.