Simple ingredients, bold flavors. Sesame Oil Chicken Soup is perfect for a chilly day, it’ll warm you up inside out! Add a bunch of noodles to it and some blanched vegetables to make it a heart-warming meal!
This one’s for you, all of you who are experiencing April snow storm right now. It was 70 and sunny outside just a few days ago. I thought my opportunity of making and sharing this recipe had passed since it was warm, but I was wrong.
I was obsessed with this dish when I was in Taiwan. Winter in Taiwan is often wet and cold. Though it’s not as cold compared to Minnesota, the endless rain makes it feel a lot worse. Scooter + rain + cold, never a great combination. I found this little shop that sells “Sesame Oil Chicken”(麻油雞 MáYóuJī) with noodles and super garlicky sweet potato leaves and I was hooked. I ate there at least once a week(it was nowhere close to where I lived) and would find any excuse just to visit that area so I could eat there.
The soup was warming, the flavor was so bold, yet simple and pure, I’d forget about the coldness outside.
The Effects of Sesame Oil Chicken Soup(麻油雞 MáYóuJī)
Sesame oil and ginger are both “warm” food in Chinese medicine. While too much sesame oil may make you “hot” (think pimples, dry mouth, easily annoyed, and dry skin), the right amount will keep your body toasty. Ginger is milder and won’t “overheat” you. Sesame Oil Chicken Soup(麻油雞 MáYóuJī) was a traditional food for the weak. People believe in sesame oil and ginger’s healing effect and a whole chicken completes all the nutrition needed for a weak body.
Though no one’s really THAT weak anymore in modern society, we still believe the healing effect this dish has. We enjoy Sesame Oil Chicken Soup(麻油雞 MáYóuJī) often in the winter and make it for women who’s just had babies.
It’s important to use the best sesame oil you can find. Traditionally, black sesame oil (黑麻油 or 黑芝麻油) is used to make this dish, but it can be harder to find. You can use toasted sesame oil, I find cold-pressed is best for this dish.
Start frying the thinly sliced ginger on low heat so the oil doesn’t get bitter.
High-quality chicken is also key to the success of this dish. Since the ingredients are simple, the better the chicken, the sweeter and tastier the broth will be. We usually buy our chicken from Hidden Stream Farm, shopping local makes a big difference in the flavor of the food. Look for your local farmers and food producers and purchase from them. I’ve been pretty grossed out by the chickens I’ve bought from Hy-vee and Costco, the quality just can’t compare to the ones that came straight from a farm.
- 1/4 C Black Sesame Oil or Cold-pressed Toasted Sesame Oil
- 1 inch Old Ginger Thinly sliced
- 2 Chicken Thighs & Drumsticks or half a chicken
- 4 C Cooking Rice Wine 米酒 Clear, NOT MIRIN. Omit if you can’t find it.
- 1 tsp Salt or to taste
- In a pot, heat up sesame oil on low heat. Add the thinly sliced ginger while the oil is heating up. Start when the oil is just warm.
- Fry the ginger until the ginger has released all the flavor and looks dry, golden, crisp, and thin. It will stop bubbling.
- Turn the heat up to medium, add the Chicken pieces and fry until the outside is cooked.
- Add rice wine and enough water to cover the chicken, turn the heat up to high and bring to a boil.
- Lower the heat to a simmer once the broth has reached a boil. Simmer for 10 ~15 minutes or until the chicken is cooked and tender.
- Add salt to taste.
- *Adding noodles to the soup*Boil a pot of water and cook the noodles of your choice till al dante. Add the noodles to the finished broth and serve.