Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Rosie Makes Chicken Moreovers. Bangbangji!

 Rosie roasted a hen a few days ago
and I'm trying to think how to make Chicken Moreovers today.
Enter my new BFF, Mrs. Chiang and her Szechwan Cookbook.
I'll be making Bangbangji, or Bon Bon Chicken today.
Mrs. Chiang claims the dish got its name
from the appearance of the pencil-thin chicken strips.
Supposedly they look like kindling, or bangbang.

There are four components to this layered salad
and the beauty is everything can be made separately, ahead of time.
Shredded cucumbers are on the bottom,
topped with cellophane noodles and the chicken sticks,
napped with a hot and spicy sauce.

And when I say "hot and spicy,"
I mean it.
And I had toned down Mrs. Chiang's recipe.

Here's Rosie's Less Spicy Adaptation of Mrs. Chiang's bangbangji:

1 pkg Chinese noodles
Bring water to boil.  Pour water over noodles.  Cover and let sit for at least 20 minutes.

1 large cucumber (Next time I'd use two.)
1/2 tsp salt
Peel the cucumber, cut them lengthwise down the middle and scoop out the seeds.  Cut cucumber into 6 sections and slice each section lengthwise as thin as you can.  Salt the cucumber, mix well, and set aside.

cooked chicken (I had a breast, leg, and thigh.)
Thinly slice the chicken into strips.

4 garlic cloves (8 for Mrs. Chiang)
1-inch piece of ginger 
 Rosie Note: I'd go with less ginger next time.  1/4 to 1/2 inch.
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp freshly ground pepper (Szechwan for Chiang.)
1 tsp hot pepper flakes (1 TB for Chiang)
1 tsp oil
1 tsp sesame oil (1 TB for Chiang.)
1 TB rice wine
5 TB Tamari
1 TB water
6 scallions

Smash the garlic cloves with the side of your knife and peel.  Mince.
Peel the ginger and mince.
Place garlic and ginger in small bowl.  
Add salt to the garlic and ginger and using a wooden handle, mash all together until they turn into a coarse paste.  The salt not only heightens the flavors of the garlic and ginger, but its action in drawing out their juices also aids in the pulverization process.
Add in the rest of the ingredients.  Mrs. Chiang also added in 3 TB of sesame paste.
Stir until thoroughly blended.

Drain the cucumbers, squeezing out as much excess water as you can. 
Cover a platter evenly with the cucumber slices.

Put the cooked and drained noodles on a chopping block and cut across them several times to make them more manageable.  Spread the noodles in a layer over the cucumber.

Arrange the chicken on top of the cellophane noodles.

Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

 Sauce and cucumber are ready.

 Chicken is sliced.

 Ready to assemble.

 Arrange the cucumber on a platter.
 Give the noodles a chop chop chop.

 Place on top of cucumber.
 Cucumbers peaking out from under noodles.

 Layer the chicken on top of the noodles.

 And pour sauce over top.

 I love these flavors and I like heat,
but this was too much for even me;
however, Middle Hawthorne came back for seconds and thirds.
My nose was running.



Rocquie said...

I am thinking about putting the cucumbers, noodles, and chicken inside rice paper wrappers and using the sauce for dipping. This looks like a delicious combo!

rosiehawthorne said...

That sounds like a really good idea, Sage.

But take care with that sauce.

I'd cut back on the ginger and add some more Tamari or Soy Sauce.

Taste test!