Chinese Chicken Stock

To prepare a Chinese hot pot, I needed to make Chinese chicken stock. Stock is an important ingredients for soups, sauces, and risottos, and homemade stock made from scratch can’t be beaten.

Traditionally Chinese chicken stock is made using a whole chicken, but for better flavor extraction I used chicken wings and ground chicken instead. There are two differences between Chinese chicken stock and ‘European’ chicken stock: for Chinese chicken stock the meat is first blanched, and the aromatics are different: ginger, garlic, cilantro, scallions, fried onions, and goji berries (also known as boxthorn seeds). To save time and achieve better flavor extraction I pressure cooked the stock; if you don’t own a pressure cooker a traditional simmer is fine too. It will just take twice as long. To make 2 litres of stock, you will need a pressure cooker with a 6 litre capacity.

The recipe for the fried onions makes about 6 times the amount needed for this recipe, and also produces onion oil. Instead you could of course make just enough to use for the stock only.

Ingredients

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For 2 litres (2.1 quarts) stock

1 kg (2.2 lbs) chicken wings

1 kg (2.2 lbs) ground chicken

1 onion, quartered

2 Tbsp fried onions, see below

60 grams (2 oz) ginger, sliced

2 garlic cloves (or 1/2 single bulb garlic)

2 scallions, roughly chopped

30 grams (1 oz) fresh cilantro, roughly chopped

2 Tbsp goji berries/boxthorn seeds

3/4 Tbsp salt, optional

For the fried onions

1 onion, about 150 grams (5 oz)

120 ml (1/2 cup) peanut oil

Preparation

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To make the fried onions, slice the onion thinly and evenly.

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Chinese would use a wok, but a frying pan works as well. Heat the oil and add the onions. Cook over high heat, stirring.

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Continue to cook over high heat until the onions start to color. Then lowe the heat to medium.

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Continue to stir until the onions are evenly browned. (I should have sliced them more evenly.)

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Strain the oil through a fine sieve into a heatproof bowl, pressing down on the onions. The onions and oil can be stored separately and used for other recipes.

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Soak the goji berries/boxthorn seeds in hot water for 10 minutes.

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Bring about 2 litres (2 quarts) of water to a boil. Add the chicken wings…

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…and the ground chicken.

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Stir and bring back to a boil. Cook for 1-2 minutes until the impurities come to the surface.

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Drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to remove the impurities.

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Put the blanched chicken wings and ground chicken in a pressure cooker or large stock pot. Add the quartered onion, 2 Tbsp fried onions, sliced ginger, whole garlic cloves, chopped scallions, chopped cilantro, and drained goji berries/boxthorn seeds.

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Add 2 litres (2.1 quarts) of cold water.

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Close the pressure cooker (if using), bring to pressure, and cook for 2 1/2 hours.

To use a stock pot, cover the pot, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, and simmer for 5 hours.

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Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve. Use at once, or cool to room temperature and refrigerate for up to 5 days, or freeze.

Add salt to taste only if you are using the stock ‘as is’ for a soup. Never add salt if you are going to reduce the stock later on, as that would  render it too salty.

Flashback


For my first experiment with agar agar I made beetroot tagliatelle. It is a bit tricky to heat them up, as they will fall apart when heated to 85ºC/185ºF.

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8 thoughts on “Chinese Chicken Stock

  1. Since all solids are strained from the final stock why is it so critical that the onions are absolutely evenly sliced?

    You are allowed to say ‘because I said so’ 🙂

    I am looking forward to what you are going to do with this stock.

    Like

    • The even slicing is to help them brown more equally. If you look at my fried onions, you see that some thinner pieces are almost black while other thicker pieces are not brown yet. I did stir enough, so I concluded it must have been the slicing.

      Like

  2. OK – I still have to ‘come your way’ re putting minced meat into would-be stock – BUT it does make a whole heap of sense and shall do! Yes well :goji berries seem to be everywhere but in my own posts as yet – slow learner . . . you know how it is 🙂 !!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Chinese Hot Pot | Stefan's Gourmet Blog

  4. You really do prepare a wide range of recipes, Stefan, from a number of cuisines. Best of all, you take the time to teach us a bit about each dish, something many of us fail to do. I’ve never used ground meat to make soup but I bet it does yield more flavor to the pot. I need to give it and this recipe a try.

    Like

  5. Pingback: Stir Fried Shrimp with Braised Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce | Stefan's Gourmet Blog

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