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ground chicken ...?

What does anyone do with ground chicken? Every once in a while, it seems like a really good idea, then I use it, and it's disappointing ... mostly a texture issue ...

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  1. Thai basil chicken. I like the texture.

    6 Replies
    1. re: cajundave

      Hey, cajun, I was gonna say that. Do you do the one with long beans and hoisin? yum.

      1. re: mamachef

        Hey mama, I like the hot one with fish sauce, serranos, onions, garlic, holy basil and oyster sauce. Not sure how the restaurants do it.

        The big problem I have is that I have never seen ground chicken sold anywhere.

        1. re: cajundave

          Cajun, I've got the recipe and technique for that; they're essentially identical, just differently named and w/ the added beans (omittable, but why wouldja?) If you'd like the recipe, let me know and I'll post for you.

          1. re: mamachef

            Mama, yes I would like your recipe. I have several thai cookbooks but none of them have a recipe that is what I get at the Thai restaurants in the Chicago area. Here they call it Spicy basil chicken or Thai spicy basil chicken. I use oyster sauce because I think thats approximates the taste of what they serve in the restaurants, I don't know for sure if that is right.
            Your input is appreciated. BTW I love long beans and think that would be good in this dish but I would not go the hoisen route, maybe I am wrong, but doesn't hoisen have chinese 5 spice?

            1. re: cajundave

              I don't taste much 5-spice (if any) in hoisin, but I think the role they play (umame, depth, salt, sugar) is so very close in a finished flavor profile that the sub. would be no prob. if you really dislike the idea of hoisin. I've used them interchangeably in a pinch : )
              Thai Basil chicken w/ Long Beans, Noodles and crispy shallots:
              Veg. oil to saute
              4 lg. shallots, crosswise, 1/4 " slices
              5 cloves garlic, 3 thinly sliced (think Goodfellas), two smashed and minced
              1/2 bunch holy basil, julienned
              3 Serrano peppers, (seeded, or not, thinly sliced. Are you brave, Dave?)
              2 T. Dark sesame oil
              6-7 oz. pkg. rice stick noodles
              1 pound best quality dark ground chicken (not mechanically separated stuff)
              3 quarts good chicken stock
              4 T. fish sauce (nam pla, nuoc mam, divided)
              8 ounces Chinese long beans or green beans, 1" pieces
              1/4 c. fresh lime juice
              2 T. raw, brown, or cane sugar, divided
              2 T. Hoisin (or Oyster) sauce
              2 good pinches cayenne
              1/2 c. chopped fresh cilantro
              1/2 c. chopped green onion
              2 T. chopped salted roasted peanuts
              Prep. your shallots by frying in 2" veg. oil until crisp, 5-6 minutes. Transfer them to paper towels to drain. Add sliced garlic to oil and fry until golden, about a minute. Transfer as well. Mix sesame oil and minced garlic in small bowl and set aside.
              Bring stock to boil in large heavy saucepan. Add ground chicken to pot and simmer until cooked through, stirring to keep pieces fairly fine. Transfer chicken to large bowl; add julienned basil and Serranos to stock. Let simmer while you add 1 T. fish sauce to chicken and toss. Return broth to boil. Add noodles; cook for 3-4 minutes, and transfer noodles to bowl w/ chicken. Boil broth yet again, add beans and cook until crisp-tender. Transfer beans, herbs and chiles to bowl with chicken and noodles. Add sesame-garlic oil and lime juice, 1 T. sugar, and remaining 3 T. fish sauce along with hoisin or oyster. Toss well. sprinkle w/ remainder of chopped herbs and peanuts, shallots, fried garlic and sprinkle w remaining T. sugar. Serve w/ Sriracha, if desired.

              1. re: mamachef

                Thanks for the recipe. The fried shallots sound good.

    2. Ground chicken can be used in larb ... maybe ma po tofu also!

      1 Reply
      1. re: Val

        I love making larb with ground chicken. So easy, you just have to cook it gently.
        Ma po tofu has been on my mind lately, sounds so comforting with fall approaching.

      2. We use ground chicken and turkey frequently instead of ground beef. I'll cook it up with various spices and black beans and roll in tortillas, use in chili along with cubed steak (cuts a lot of fat and I like two different meat textures in my chili), and chicken burgers with rosemary, garlic, etc. are pretty darned good. It doesn't taste like ground beef and I have no illusions about that, but it can be pretty tasty.

        1. A couple Japanese dishes with ground chicken that I enjoy are tsukune and soboro (seasoned ground chicken) . We make tsukune into meatballs, but you can also make a patty or like a kebab. Soboro is great on top of plain rice with peas, scrambled eggs or corn w/ beni shooga or inside a rice balll (onigiri). Tsukune can be fried, simmered or grilled yakitori style. I love to grill it.

          1. we do a potato hash that uses ground chicken

            1 Reply
            1. re: LaLa

              Oh yum, ground chicken potato hash. I need to know your technique for making this. Please!

            2. My husband hasn't eaten any red meat products in 40 years, so poultry is a cooking mainstay here. That said, I rarely buy ground chicken or ground turkey "breast" because I find both to end up a bit too dry regardless of what I do with them.

              What we both prefer is regular "ground turkey", which is made up of both white & dark meat & thus has a bit more natural fat & body to it. Next time you get a healthy urge to buy ground chicken for a recipe, give regular (not the breast) ground turkey a try. You might be pleasantly surprised!

              2 Replies
              1. re: Breezychow

                hey, breezy...I agree with you on the regular ground turkey BUT you really should check what brand you buy...at Publix, their store brand regular ground turkey has WAY more fat than Jennie-O regular ground turkey...I'm just saying...you don't need to buy Jennie-O...but flip the package over and check out the difference between store brand and whatever other brand they sell...you might be surprised!

                1. re: Val

                  Actually, Shady Brook Farm is our preferred brand & what's sold in all the markets around here. Jennie-O is only sold in one market around here, & when I can get it at a good price, I do buy it. Rarely if ever buy the store brand, since there rarely is a store brand to buy.

                  Have found Jennie-O's turkey products to be pretty good. Their Turkey Ham is a really prime product. I use it in everything & anything that would normally call call for regular pork ham. Great stuff. And a big "hunk" is only a few bucks & makes so many different meals.

              2. Chicken croquettes? I've not done that; I make them from leftover cooked chicken but they could certainly be done with uncooked ground.

                According to Cook's Illustrated, it can be used for a quick from scratch chicken soup. Though, with boneless chicken breasts also simmered in the pot along with the ground chicken, it's an expensive way to make soup. However, I think you could eliminate the breasts and instead strain out the spent meat, add some seasonings, egg, and binder and make it into meatballs/dumplings to cook in the soup broth.

                1. Sloppy Joes, or maybe (even better) Manwich!

                  1. empanadas, samosas, meatballs, and sloppy joes.

                    1. I had to drain the ground chicken (from a 1-pound plastic roll) in a sieve, until all the water had all drained. Then it was almost like hamburger texture. I put some olive oil in a non-stick skilled and plopped the whole amount in there and pressed down to make a huge patty! Browned on both sides, later used it in a recipe for chili. The key is draining it well.

                      1. The dish that leaps to mind for me is larb. But it's important to understand some background of Lao/Isaan cuisine. Dishes are meant to be eaten with one's hands using balls of sticky rice. While you don't necessarily have to eat with your hands, I think sticky rice is nearly essential with larb; indeed, it's probably the reason that the chicken was ground to begin with.