Author Notes: Cooking chicken with Sesame oil is a traditional way of cooking in Taiwan, and it is especially popular in winter. Asian people believe that ginger and sesame oil dishes can warm people's stomach and body. During the winter time, having a homemade hot sesame oil chicken soup is a precious memory for many people. Sesame oil Chicken Rice is a simple dish, a easy format of sesame oil chicken soup. It is easy to make, it smells good, and, of course, it tastes amazing. Every mother has her own secret recipe to use sesame oil to cook chicken, and every kid will say “My mom's is the best. ” I want to share the recipe I've learned from my mom. —Enyi
pounds chicken (dark meat is better)
cup Asian-style Sesame oil
cup Cooking rice wine
- First, find Asian-style Sesame oil and a bottle of cooking rice wine. Asian-style Sesame oil usually looks dark and has a strong flavor because it is made with black seeds (Semen Sesami Nigrum). Instead of using of sherry wine or Vermouth as in Western-style cooking, people in East Asia use rice wine. Please note that some rice wines contain salt; if you buy a rice wine containing salt, be sure to cut back on the amount of additional salt that you add. My experience is Asian-style Sesame oil can be easily found in most stores. Rice wine is usually only found in Asian markets. If you cannot find the cooking rice wine I use, you can use “AJI-MIRIN” which can be easily found in most stores. However, since AJI-MIRIN is a sweet rice wine, the flavor is slightly different and you will have to add salt in your dish and reduce the amount of sweet rice wine you use to prevent it from becoming too sweet. I usually use half traditional rice wine and half AJI-MIRIN and my mom only uses rice wine in her recipe.
- Heat the cast iron on the stove. When the cast iron is hot, add the sesame oil and ginger (thin slices). Let the ginger cook in the hot oil for a while until you can smell the flavor and see the edge of the ginger slices begin to brown.
- Add the chicken legs to the pot and stir-fry them 3-5 minutes.
- Add rice wine to the pot and cook for one minute.
- We will use the same pot to cook the rice, so remove the chicken and liquid from the pot and add the rice to the pot. When using cast iron to cook rice, the ratio for Rice :Water should be 1:1, but since the sesame oil and rice wine are still in the pot, we need to subtract them from the amount of water we need to add. For 2 cups of rice, we only need to add 1 and 1/4 cups of water.
- Add the 2 cups rice and 1 and 1/4 cups water to the pot and then put chicken (and all the liquid) back top of the rice. Don't stir them -the chicken should be on top of the rice. Cover the pot and use the cast iron to cook the rice as usual ( use medium heat to cook it until you see steam, then reduce to low heat and cook for 20 more minutes)
- When you feel the rice is well-done, open the lid and stir. Now you have amazing Taiwanese style Sesame oil Chicken Rice.
- If you don't use cast iron, you can stir fry the chicken in a regular pot and use any equipment to cook the rice. The procedure and rule for water is similar.