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February 2014 Cookbook of the Month-- ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More: Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches;Transformations of Rice

Please use this thread to report on the following chapters from ASIAN DUMPLINGS: Mastering Gyoza, Spring Rolls, Samosas, and More by Andrea Nguyen.

Translucent Wheat and Tapioca Starches, pages 130-151
Transformations of Rice, pages 152-177

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  1. Fried Sticky Rice Dumplings, p. 163

    I decided to kick off the year of the horse with these dumplings. Now, I have to eat gluten-free, and while there are a number of gluten-free wrappers in this book, this particular wrapper, as written, is not. So a little adaptation had to occur.

    The recipe for the dough calls for 5 3/4 ounces of glutinous rice flour and 2 1/4 ounces of wheat starch. The glutinous rice flour is gluten-free, and I had it on hand, so no problem there. The wheat starch is a problem. I suspect I could have made the dough with 100% rice flour, but I decided to substitute some tapioca flour for the wheat starch. I used the same amount, by weight, as the amount of wheat starch in the recipe.

    The other dry ingredients are sugar and salt. They all get mixed together in a bowl. Two tablespoons of lard go in, and then you pour in some water just off the boil. Stir until the lard melts and the dough starts to come together. Then you transfer to a work surface and knead until you have a cohesive ball. Wrap the ball in some plastic wrap and set aside to let cool. Easy as can be.

    The dough is divided in half (with one half being wrapped back up so it won't dry out). You roll this into a log and cut into 10 pieces. Each piece gets shaped into a football-shaped dumpling, according to instructions on p. 164, and filled with the filling. I used the Char Siu Pork and Mushroom Filling on p 166. The the dumplings then get fried in oil.

    The dough came together just as described in the book. Some of my footballs didn't look perfect when I shaped them, and I was concerned that they might fall apart in frying or at least come out looking ugly. But that did not happen. What did happen is that in the oil, they seemed to even out and came out better-looking than when they went in. And not a single one broke open in oil. In short, this is a very forgiving recipe. They came out a nice golden brown, and the crust was crunchy on the outside with a bit of chewiness inside. Delicious. Served with a kumquat dipping sauce, which was not from this book.

    2 Replies
    1. re: MelMM

      Forgot to add picture. The dumplings are front left, accompanied by a spring roll in rice paper, a lettuce wrap, and the kumquat dipping sauce.

      1. re: MelMM

        Look at you go Mel, those look stunning. I love that the deep frying not only made them tasty but also made them prettier.

      2. Char Siu Pork and Mushroom Filling, p. 166

        I used this filling for the Fried Sticky Rice Dumplings on p. 163. I had some homemade Char Siu that I made from a Grace Young recipe, but smoked in my Big Green Egg. So that's what I used for the char siu. To make the filling, you dice up the char siu, a bit of dried shrimp, a scallion, and a couple reconstituted dried shitakes. This gets sautéed and seasoned with a sauce of soy sauce, oyster sauce, rice wine (bourbon in my case), sugar, white pepper, and five spice powder. The sauce has a bit or cornstarch mixed in to thicken the mixture. When you add the sauce, it quickly thickens up so the filling is not "saucy" at all, just seasoned.

        This filling had a nice bold flavor, so it was perfect for the sticky rice dumplings. My char siu was very smoky and strong tasting, so it made a nice foil for the mild dumpling dough. I would definitely repeat these dumplings and this filling.

        1. Har Gow Shrimp Dumplings, p. 135 and
          Vegetarian Crystal Dumplings, p. 139

          Okay, I'm cheating a bit as it's been a month or so since I made these :) But from the cookbook they're the ones I keep going back to, mainly cause that's the kind I like to eat.

          For the har gow, I sub water chestnuts for the bamboo shoots cause I like them better. Otherwise I follow the recipes exactly and the result is really great.

          2 Replies
          1. re: c oliver

            Lovely looking? I plan on trying the har gow this month as they are my husband's favourites. How easy did you find the dough to work with?

            1. re: delys77

              As I've mentioned, I took a class by her last year and, for me anyway, this was the easiest dough. I have a tortilla press and it works great for making dumplings. You sometimes get it too thin and then just "wad" it up and redo - a frequent word heard in our class :) The dowel is pretty important also. We had some pieces in the garage that worked great. You're gonna be blown away!

              ETA: Those dumplings were a little overcooked.

          2. Sticky Rice and Spiced Chicken in Banana Leaf - p. 173

            Amazingly I had everything for this recipe but the chicken which is easy to pick up at any store. You have to be a bit organized with the recipe as AN instructs to soak glutinous rice for at least 2 hours, even overnight. I started in the morning. Soaked the rice and defrosted all ingredients that were in the freezer. Had an event during the day and was planning to go to Asian market to pick up steamer rack but the weather turned really nasty and I only dashed to the grocery for chicken. Rice had to be steamed and I struggled without proper rack and overcooked it somewhat but it is still great. So, now I have all components sitting in the fridge - defrosted banana leaves, cooked rice and chicken filling. I made a couple of small rice balls with the filling inside just to taste and they were so good! Tonight I am too tired to cook, work tomorrow and an evening activity... Will be steaming little packets on Tuesday evening and will report then. But I already know that it will be delicious :)

            1. So I have a question for the experienced dumpling-makers on this board. How much more labor intensive is it to make your own dumpling skins vs. using store bought. And is it worth it? I've never used either.

              17 Replies
              1. re: Westminstress

                It certainly is more work than opening a package, but IMHO when time permits, it is worth it. It takes a while to get into the groove of rolling, but the homemade skins are so much easier to work with and much more forgiving when pleating and sealing and it doesn't take long to find a rhythm. Plus you can have fun and play with the colours of the dough, which makes a dumpling binge-fest more exciting!

                1. re: Allegra_K

                  I made my own for the first time a few days ago. The instructions in the book were spot on, and I really had no trouble (although I did get a few tiny holes when pinching them together). I pretty much had to make them, as I did not see pre-made at the large Asian market I shopped at to get the various starches. Perhaps I did not know where to look! (I was looking for them when I was having trouble finding the starches-- but I eventually found the starches and made them myself).

                  1. re: DGresh

                    That also brings up a good point, some wrappers (ie: leavened dough, wheat starch and tapioca starch based skins, glutinous rice dough) are not available even in Asian markets, you kinda have to make your own; whereas others, (ie: basic dumpling, wonton, spring roll, rice sheets) are pretty available, usually found near the refrigerated fresh noodles in Asian markets.

                2. re: Westminstress

                  I've done it once and never made homemade skins again. They ARE much better, but if you're making a large batch of dumplings to freeze (which is what we do) and you're still learning how to roll out the skins, it can take forever.

                  1. re: emily

                    Btw, I was doing the traditional hand rolling method with a thin wooden dowel when I tried these - I think the tortilla press would be much faster.

                    1. re: emily

                      I can't remember if I mentioned but Andrea taught us to first use the tortilla press and then a dowel for making the edges thinner than the rest. Easy peasy.

                      1. re: emily

                        It's unconventional, but I preferred using a pastry roller to using a dowel.

                    2. re: Westminstress

                      Absolutely worth it. No comparison actually. And once you learn how to do it, it's pretty much a snap. I would never consider buying the wrappers again.

                      1. re: Westminstress

                        I'd look at it this way; if you are someone who thinks it is worthwhile to make noodles/pasta by hand, then making your own dumpling wrappers is worth giving a whirl. If not, there's a reason fresh/boxed noodles are available at the market! The trade off in making wrappers is pretty similar.

                        Also it is a question of access and personal taste--I've made rice sheets before, but didn't think they were worth the extra trouble given my lack of expertise, and easy access to a good Asian grocery that carries fresh local rice sheets. On the other hand I never make jiaozi or guotie with store bought wrappers, 'cause mine are better!

                        1. re: qianning


                          How do make your guotie wrappers? Similar to Nguyen? Dunlop? An entirely different technique?

                          1. re: BigSal

                            More like Dunlop's, cold water dough, but with the Taiwanese twist of adding a little oil (1/4 tsp per 1 C flour) to the dough. And just to clarify, not saying this is better than AN's, just that we like it better than store bought.

                            Have never made the hot water dough, hoping to try AN's sometime this month.

                            1. re: qianning

                              I've only made ANs with the "just boiled water." Love it and it's super easy. Also has a little oil.

                              1. re: qianning

                                Thank you. I did like Dunlop's version with a touch of oil and two different flours. I liked Nguyen's too (which is very similar to Hiroko Shimbo's recipe, but I believe Shimbo's includes salt). I think I remember really liking the texture of Dunlop's a bit more. I may have to compare them side by side to really determine.

                                1. re: BigSal

                                  This month I've found myself wondering if I should try a couple of doughs side by side (different recipes, different flours, & etc), but whether I'll have the ambition to actually do so remains to be seen....

                                  You, on the other hand, are often so good about this sort of test, shall love to hear if you have a chance to do any comparisons.

                                  I don't think I ever add salt to unleavened doughs--bread, pasta or "skins"--am I missing something?

                                  1. re: qianning

                                    I honestly can't remember if I noticed a difference with salt added. I'd like to figure out which I prefer. Fortunately, my family has become accustomed to my crazy food quests. The search for the best bulgogi recipe was warmly received. :)

                                    1. re: BigSal

                                      "best bulgogi", your family is lucky!

                                      I have a lot of Chinese books on dumplings/buns/breads/snacks and the differences in recommended flours and proportions and techniques are quite wide. And often diametrically different from AN's recipe.

                                      So far I'm really impressed with AN's exact and accurate measurements (this is not a strong point of Chinese recipes, IMO & experience); but I would like to try at least one side by side comparison with different flours this month.

                          2. re: Westminstress

                            Thank you all for sharing your thoughts and experiences. I have both a tortilla press and a pasta machine (a hand crank Atlas) but have made neither tortillas nor pasta since my son was born 3.5 years ago. Neither is particularly difficult, both are better homemade, but in both cases it is far easier to open up a package. In the case of the dumpling skins I had the impression that the time spent making and rolling dough was somewhat offset by the fact that filling the dumplings is easier and faster.... but it sounds like even taking that into account, making homemade skins is more work.

                          3. Rice Sheet Batter - p. 154

                            My other half is away for the weekend, so I thought Sunday would be the perfect day for dumpling projects. Sadly, this recipe was not terribly successful for me and my project day was a little bit more frustrating than I had hoped. I do feel a little bit better though now that I see there's a 3 star review for this recipe on EYB.

                            The batter for the rice sheets comes together very easily. Just whisk together rice flour, cornstarch, tapioca starch, salt, canola oil, and water and let rest for at least 30 minutes.

                            Nguyen gives you a choice of then cooking the rice sheets by steaming or poaching. Ideally, you should have a square baking pan to do this. We only have rectangular or circular pans, so I opted to use one of my smaller (and less rectangular) baking dishes. Ideally it would also be metal, but I tried to make it work with a very thin Corningware as all of our metal pans are huge.

                            The pan is preheated either in the steamer tray or floating in a pan to poach. The lid to my steamer didn't quite fit with the pan in it, so I also covered with a towel and it seemed to heat very nicely. Batter is then ladled into the pan to cover the bottom by about 1/8 inch and left to cook for 5 minutes.

                            For my first noodle sheet, it still seemed a little soft, but wasn't sticking to my finger (the test she suggests), so I removed it from heat, let it cool for a couple of minutes, and then tried to remove the sheet only to end up with a gloopy blob. For subsequent rice sheets, I let it cook for significantly longer (12 - 15 minutes) assuming that my heating system/pan wasn't working very well and my noodle sheets may've been a bit thick. These worked much better, but I still occasionally lost portions of the sheet. (After my first complete miss, I made a second batch of batter.)

                            I somewhat assembled my dumplings with a few occasional tears while folding when they must've cooled for a bit too long. For cooking, I decided to give a bit more than the 5 minutes of steaming because my rolls were over-sized due to pan issues, tearing, etc. The end result was that some of the rolls just seemed to fall apart entirely. The flavor of the rice sheet was great, but presentation left a lot to be desired.

                            I'd be very interested to hear someone else's experience with making these. Next time, I'll just buy the sheets!

                            28 Replies
                            1. re: TxnInMtl

                              I bought the rice flour in thoughts of making this, but on reading the recipe again decided that I didn't have the proper equipment to really do these; I think i would have been more or less where you were-- frustrated! now I have to figure out something else to do with my bag of rice flour!

                              1. re: TxnInMtl

                                Too sad. Such dedication to try twice. At least they tasted good!

                                You might want to take a look at the recipe in Hot Sour Sweet Spicy. Allegra K wrote about it here:

                                I've tried a recipe for them in the past (spurred on by A-K's adventure), but I'm with you &decided store bought is a better option for me.

                                1. re: qianning

                                  Thanks. This looks very similar. A-K mentions temperature issues. I wonder if I'd have better luck poaching with a metal pan that's the right size. I'm not sure I'm enough of a glutton for punishment to test that theory though!

                                2. re: TxnInMtl

                                  I was (ok, still am) planning on making these today. My plan was to make them and cut into noodles for beef chow fun. Maybe I should have a back-up plan.

                                  1. re: MelMM

                                    I can't remember whose recipe I used when I made them, but I know I did use them for chow fun (or actually the Malaysian-Straits Chinese equivalent, Cha Kway Teow). The home-made noodles are so soft that they break up quite a bit during the "chow" (stir-fry?) phase. Like TIM's experience, mine tasted great but presentation was a bit wobbly.

                                  2. re: TxnInMtl

                                    My cooking partner and I made these in the class we took from her and they were a bit more difficult. Actually quite a bit :) I haven't made them since but I should really give it a try. Thanks for the reminder.

                                    1. re: c oliver

                                      I realized while I was on her website today that I really should take advantage of being in SF currently to take one of her classes. She has one at the end of February that's already sold out, but I'll have to keep an eye on it and try for another.

                                      1. re: TxnInMtl

                                        We learned SO much and had a great time. She's such a good and fun teacher. Also was it mentioned here that she does online classes at craftsy.com?


                                    2. re: TxnInMtl

                                      Rice Sheets, pp. 154-155

                                      Made these last night, for use as noodles in beef chow fun. I think perhaps the trickiest part of this recipe is coming up with a configuration of pans for the steaming or poaching. I didn't have a square pan, but I found a rectangular non-stick pan that I sometimes use in the toaster oven, which measures 9X6" on the bottom. I used my electric skillet to poach them, and the pan fit easily in it. My electric skillet has a clear lid with an adjustable vent, so I could see the sheets cook, and open the vent to prevent too much steam from building up, condensing on the lid, and dripping back down.

                                      This worked perfectly. My first sheet was a little less than perfect, because I was trying to pour the batter from the bowl, and I was afraid of pouring too much, so I ended up not pouring enough. I had to keep gradually adding more, but since the batter sets up pretty quickly, it didn't flow together and I got a sheet that had an uneven thickness. What I decided to do at that point was use a ladle. I measured 6 tablespoons of water into the ladle, and made a mental note of how far up the sides of the ladle it came. Then I filled the ladle with a comparable amount of batter, and poured it all in at once. With that method the rice sheets came out perfect.

                                      I also set up a pyrex baking pan, larger than the pan I was cooking the rice sheets in, and filled it with ice water. When a sheet was done poaching, I'd lift out the metal pan and set it in the ice water to cool quickly. Then I'd lift the rice sheet out and lay it on a piece of parchment, and I stacked the sheets this way, with parchment in between each layer. I got four sheets out of one batch of batter.

                                      Because I wanted to use these for noodles, I put them in the refrigerator for a couple hours. This decision was based on the last sentence of the instructions, plus qianning's comment about the soft noodles breaking up during the stir-fry. My thinking being that having the noodles harden up a bit in the fridge would prevent that. It did, for the most part, but next time, I will probably make them the night before, and let them sit in the fridge for even longer.

                                      I cut these into noodles, and used them in Grace Young's recipe for beef chow fun from Stir-Frying to the Sky's Edge. The only problem was, the single recipe of rice sheets did not yield enough noodles for the beef chow fun recipe. But I had the meat already prepped, and so I went ahead and made the full recipe with the smaller amount of noodles. It was delicious, but I want to do it again with the right amount of noodles. It will take at least two, perhaps three batches.

                                      1. re: MelMM

                                        Great job! I remember when I read this recipe I resolved that I didn't have the proper equipment to attempt it. Glad to see some success in tackling it.

                                        1. re: delys77

                                          I thought I'd report back for those who (like me!) lacked proper equipment to tackle this. I attended Andrea's Asian Dumpling class in SF this past weekend. For the rice batter, she gave a recipe different from the book because the one in the book isn't very homecook friendly with the setup. The new recipe adds wheat starch to the batter (3/4 tsp salt, 20g wheat starch, 30g tapioca starch, 160g rice flour with 1 cup water whisked in and then left to bloom for an hour and then an additional 1 1/3 cups of just-boiled water and 1/4 cup canola oil whisked in). The new batter can then be poured straight into a lightly oiled skillet over medium-low heat. Once it's cooked, invert the skillet and bang it out. Most of the class still had trouble with getting the rice sheet out in one piece, but this method seems far less finicky than the original. I'm so impressed with the people who had success with this the first time around!

                                          1. re: TxnInMtl

                                            I took her class in Spring 2013. If I'm thinking about what you describe, we put the batter in a square pan and that then went into a skillet with simmering water. Is that what you're talking about?

                                            PS: Wasn't the class wonderful???

                                            1. re: c oliver

                                              The original recipes uses a pan with simmering water, but her revised version allows you to just heat the skillet on low heat and pour directly in the skillet. No need for water or a separate pan.

                                              I really enjoyed the class. She's so down to earth!

                                              1. re: TxnInMtl

                                                That's great to know! I have an induction cooktop so I can go REAL low.

                                                I loved it when she would say to not worry about how the dumpling looked, it was still going to taste good. And it did.

                                        2. re: TxnInMtl

                                          Rice Sheets p. 154-155

                                          Inspired by MelMM’s post, I thought this would be a fun kitchen project. It was. Thank you MeIMM.

                                          I steamed the batter to make the noodles instead of poaching. The hardest part for me was making sure my pan was level to ensure the noodles have a consistent level of thickness. After gaining confidence with the technique, I've been playing with the ratios of rice flour/tapioca flour resulting in different textures. I am looking forward to trying more dishes with the fresh noodles.

                                          1. re: BigSal

                                            Those look down right professional.

                                            1. re: BigSal

                                              This recipe has become a go-to for me. I've made them several times, including for the phat si ew from Pok Pok. For a noodle dish for two of us, I'll make a triple batch. If I'm going to stir-fry them, I like to make them a day in advance. Stacked between parchment, they will keep 3 or 4 days in the fridge before they get too stiff to use as-is. One batch that did get too stiff, I used Andy Ricker's suggested method of microwaving briefly and they softened right up. This has been a very versatile and forgiving recipe.

                                              1. re: MelMM

                                                Good to know that they keep several days in the fridge. Are there any other recipes you'd recommend I try with the noodles?

                                                1. re: BigSal

                                                  I did not use them for any of the recipes in the book. There is a rolled formation in the book, where I think they would need to be very fresh. I've used them for Grace Young's Beef Chow Fun, from Stir Frying to the Sky's Edge, and I think that is my favorite use for them so far. Have repeated a few times. I also used them for the Phat Si Ew from Pok Pok, where the noodles performed just fine, although it wasn't my favorite recipe. I think I may have used them in something else, but I can't think of it right now.

                                                  1. re: MelMM

                                                    Thanks, I'll give the Beef Chow Fun a go

                                                    1. re: BigSal

                                                      Char Kuey Teow, http://rasamalaysia.com/char-kuey-teo... , are another great use for good fresh rice sheets/noodles. This isn't the recipe I usually use, which is from "Food of Malaysia" from the Periplus series, but it is very similar.

                                                        1. re: qianning

                                                          I'm planning on making char kuey tow this weekend. The recipe references dark soy sauce and soy sauce. Should I use Chinese dark soy and my everyday soy? Or any other suggestions? Thank you.

                                                          1. re: BigSal

                                                            For this dish I would use kecap manis for the dark soy and omit sugar

                                                            1. re: jadec

                                                              Agree that kecap manis & omit the sigar would work well for the dark soy.

                                                              I usually make char kuey teow with Kimlan light yi ren soy & Pearl river superior dark soy, which are our everyday soy sauces. But would think that whatever soy you use everyday & that tastes "right" to you would be fine. You do want some dark soy in there for the added umami and the darker color.

                                                              1. re: qianning

                                                                Thanks qianning and jadec.I will give it a go and report back.

                                                          2. re: qianning

                                                            We finally had a chance to make this recipe sans the clams. It turned out a bit darker than the picture on the blog (I used a combination of light and dark soy), but otherwise it was a hit. We preferred this version to the Complete Asian version. Thanks for the suggestion.

                                              2. Beef and Orange Rice Rolls - p. 157

                                                While the rice sheets themselves were a real headache, I greatly enjoyed the filling on these (NB the book has a typo in step two and references "How to Make Rice Sheets" on page 215 instead of 155).

                                                To make the filling, orange zest, sugar, salt, white pepper, baking soda, cornstarch, soy sauce, water, and oil are mixed together. Then finely chopped scallions and minced beef are mixed in. She says to mix your own beef so it isn't too finely textured and clumpy, but I had a surplus of ground beef, so I went ahead and used that instead. The meat mixture melds for 30 minutes and is then rolled into the rice sheets before being steamed. Sweet soy sauce is poured over the rolls. She also suggests chile garlic sauce for dipping which would've been a nice addition, but I forgot about it.

                                                The flavor of these rolls was great with the hint of orange and salty-sweetness of the soy sauce. I'd make these again, but only if I could use pre-made rice sheets next time.

                                                1. Sticky Rice and Spiced Chicken in Banana Leaf Pg. 173

                                                  I've often seen these little packets when travelling in Asia, or in Asian markets here, but I've never tried them. Not sure why, as they always look tasty, just always get wooed by something else I suppose. That said, when I saw the photo of this in the book it looked very tasty so I decided to give it a try.

                                                  I've never made sticky rice before, but I followed her instructions precisely, using the insert from my rice cooker, perched on a little stand inside my stockpot. Timing was just right and the results were shiny and glutinous, just as expected.

                                                  Next I moved on to the filling which was exceedingly simple to put together. You simply poach some chicken thighs in a bit of salted water, and then shred once they have cooled. Meanwhile you prepare a spice paste with chilli, garlic, galangal, shallot, candle nut (macadamia in my case), coriander and cumin, all of which goes into a hot pan to cook through for a bit. This is followed by some lovely kaffir lime leaves, which go in for about a minute before tossing in some coconut milk and the chicken pieces. Season with salt and cook for about 8 minutes until the mixture is dry. The result is a very flavourful dryish chicken mixture that I expected would pack quite a punch. In fact I was a bit worried it would overpower the rice and I wouldn't be able to taste anything else.

                                                  I did proceed to lay out some rice on washed banana leaves, which I then topped with a bit of chicken and capped with some more rice. Finally you roll up your leaf and then AN gives some instructions about sealing it with toothpicks, or stapling. I was a bit confused how she wanted me to do this so I simply folded the leaf into little parcels and left it at that. As my stove top was busy and the rain outside was coming down too hard to venture out to the grill I decided to bake them as she suggests.

                                                  The result was very surprising. I could definitely taste some of the tea like flavour that the leaves had infused the rice with, but the chicken and rice wasn't as flavourful as I had expected. Don't get me wrong, this dish was good, but I was expecting some serious pungency based on the paste and how flavourful it was before going into the rice. Instead, the chicken and rice blend together, resulting in a slightly creamy rice with moderately flavoured chicken playing off the rice's creaminess, and slight undertones of smoke and herbs from the banana wrapping.

                                                  It was good, but I think with just a touch more salt in both the rice and chicken it would have been all that much better. Bringing the flavours up just enough. Also, I would likely put the lime leaves in earlier so that they impart more flavour. Overall though, this is a nice dish and AN does say season to taste, but just remember how much rice the chicken has to flavour when you season that chicken.

                                                  3 Replies
                                                  1. re: delys77

                                                    They look so good. I'm putting them on my to-do list, and I'll keep in mind your seasoning issues.

                                                    1. re: delys77

                                                      I made this too up the thread but didn't report on the finished dish. I did assemble as instructed including securing with toothpicks and steamed. My bundles were very flavourful and definitely not underseasoned! I did salt to taste and thought that the chicken was very assertive on its own. It was good wrapped into a small ball of rice but so much better steamed in banana leaves. Rice somehow changed during the steaming and became silky. I loved it!

                                                      EDA: Forgot to mention that I saved chicken poaching liquid and used it to make onion soup because I wanted light chicken stock for my soup. It was very-very good made with onions oven caramelized by JoanN's method.

                                                      1. re: herby

                                                        Oh that's right Herby, I had forgotten your post about the staging for this dish. I definitely agree that the steaming in banana leaf definitely adds to the rice, both in terms of texture and flavour.

                                                        When it came time to season to taste I thought the chicken was super pungent already so I didn't add anymore salt, that said, now I would given that the chicken can afford to be pungent given the amount of rice it is paired with.