My kids took after my husband, they so love noodle soups especially the ones with egg noodles. So whenever we go to a Chinese restaurant my kids would almost always order noodle soups. It's one way to test if the restaurant is any good. My son would get the braised beef while the girls would more often than not order the soya chicken noodle soup.
This delicious soya chicken dish (sometimes called soy chicken) it involves braising a whole chicken in soy sauce and spices and then hanged to dry and crisp up. You can usually see this hanging with roast ducks and crispy roast pork in Chinese restaurants serving roast meats. It is great with noodles (both the stir-fried and soupy varieties) or simply with steamed rice.
Here is an attempt to re-create soya chicken at home to reduce our visits to noodle restaurants. I did not bother to use a whole chicken and dispensed with the air-drying thing. It is delicious nonetheless.
1 cup dark soy sauce
1 cup light soy sauce
1/2 cup Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1/2 cup packed brown sugar or 1/2 cup Chinese rock sugar
1 tsp fennel seeds
3 whole star anise
1 tsp Szechuan peppercorn - roasted
1 inch fresh ginger - peeled and lightly smashed
1 cinnamon stick
500 g chicken legs
- Combine all ingredients except the chicken in a pot. Bring to boil in medium heat.
- Add in the chicken and bring back to boil.
- Lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Turn or braise chicken with the sauce from time to time.
- Turn off heat, cover pot (if not yet covered) and let sit for 1 hour.
- Remove chicken from sauce. Cut up into serving pieces and serve with steamed rice or noodles in soup.