Updated: Jan 12
I adapted the Coconut Poached Chicken recipe from the Le Cresuet website. It is a little more work but this dish is of restaurant quality. Just look at the list of ingredients and you can tell it‘s full of amazing flavours.
The poaching method allows chicken breasts to cook slowly in low heat, without harming the texture of the meat. The result is moist and juicy breast meat.
1 whole bulb fennel, roughly chopped
1 x 5cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 chilies, chopped
4 baby onions or shallots, peeled and quartered
2 tablespoons oil
Chicken breasts or thighs, boneless. About 1 cm thick.
2 star anises
1 tablespoons peppercorns
1 454 g can of coconut milk
1 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoons fish sauce
Serve with rice.
Put a little salt over chicken breast for about 30 mins.
Dice fennel, ginger, garlic, chilli and onions into small pieces. Add it to a pot with 2 tablespoons oil over a low to medium heat and gently fry stirring occasionally for 5 minutes until it starts to brown lightly.
Put star anises and peppercorns in a small muslin bag. If you cannot find a bag, do without it but remove the anises and most peppercorns in step 6.
Put chicken and anise bag into the pot.
Top up with water until it barely covers the chicken. Gently simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on over a medium to low heat to cook the chicken. Make sure it doesn’t boil- just tiny bubbles poaching the chicken.
Turn chicken breast to cook the other side for 5 minutes
Remove the chicken carefully and wrapped it up in tinfoil. Let it rests. Don't worry if the meat is a little pink.
Remove the anise bag and use a hand blender to breakdown the fennel and garlic mixture.
Put the anise bag and blended mixture back into the pot. Add coconut milk.
Turn up the heat and let the broth come to a fast simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Seasoned with soy sauce and add a dash of fish sauce.
Add chicken back to the pot when ready to serve. If chicken is a little pink, put chicken back into the pot until completely cooked. If chicken is well done don’t reheat; just use the heat of the sauce to warm up the chicken.
Add lime slices, additional red chili and cilantro as garnish.
It's more work but also more rewarding. Give it a try.