I was just looking at some of my previous blog entries and realised that I have been cooking meat dishes using more chicken than other types of meat (Honey Baked Chicken Wings, Chicken Laksa, and Drunken Chicken in Spicy Dark Sauce). I have not really tried much dishes using seafood and I hope to cook tuna or salmon one of these days. I guess my favourite type of meat is still chicken. Yum! I was cooking this dish last night – Chicken and Potatoes in Black Peppercorn Stew and it turned out quite pleasant. So for now, another chicken dish to share!
This is an all time childhood favourite from my mum’s kitchen. The ingredients for this stew are not extravagant and this is a dish that could be easily prepared. The taste is sweet, savoury (as a result of the slow cooking of the onions, carrots and chicken) and has a nice aroma from the peppercorns. As I said earlier, the ingredients for the stew are fairly common and the taste is nothing extraordinary. However, what I really like about this homely hot stew is the combination of sweet and savoury flavours over a bowl of warm rice.
I have tried cooking and perfecting this stew several times so that it could matches my mum’s original recipe. The first few attempts were not so successfully, but after several trial and errors (cooking is after all a practice of patience), I managed to create something which is somewhat similar to my mum’s dish.
Chicken and Potatoes in Black Peppercorn Stew Recipe (serves 4-5 persons)
1 teaspoon of grounded black pepper
4 tablespoons of light soy sauce
4 tablespoons of dark Soy sauce
2-3 large brown onions (chopped into small pieces)
½ tablespoon of black peppercorns (lightly crushed)
1 kg of chicken meat (boneless chicken thigh or drumsticks)
3 large potatoes (cut into quarter pieces)
3 medium sized carrots (cut into bite-sized pieces)
500ml of water
1 teaspoon of salt
Cornflour paste (mixture of 1 tablespoon of cornflour and 2 tablespoons of water)
1. Marinate the chicken meat with the grounded black pepper, 2 tablespoons each of light and dark soy sauces. Set the meat aside for an hour or longer. Keep the remaining light and dark soy sauces for later use.
2. Heat up some oil in a large wok or cooking pan. Add half of the onions and stir-fry in high heat for a while (be careful not to burn the onions).
3. Add the crushed black peppercorns and stir-fry them for a short while before adding the chicken meat into the wok. Brown the chicken meat lightly and do not overcook the meat. Remove the meat from the heat and set it aside.
4. Heat up some vegetable oil in the same wok and stir-fry the remaining onions in high heat for awhile. Add in the potatoes and carrots and stir-fry until fragrant.
5. Return the chicken meat into the wok and add in the water. Turn the heat to low-medium heat and simmer the mixture for an hour.
6. Stir the mixture occasionally to prevent the vegetables or meat from sticking at the bottom of the wok and to cook them more evenly. If the stew is boiling, reduce the heat to low and continue cooking. Add more water to the stew if it appears too dry.
7. After an hour, add the salt, cornflour paste, remaining light and dark soy sauces into the stew. Mix well and check if the meat and vegetables are cooked properly. Taste and adjust accordingly if you need to add more salt or soy sauce into the stew.
8. Bring the stew to a quick boil and remove from the heat. Dish the stew out and serve with warm rice.