5:2 Fast Day dinner: Asian Poached Chicken with Vegetable Salad and Vietnamese Dressing

Asian Poached Chicken

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Asian Poached Chicken with Vegetable Salad and Vietnamese Dressing

I discovered the joys of poached chicken when one of our Images of France photography course guests introduced me to the work of a New Zealand cook, Annabel Langbein. Her book, Cooking to Impress without Stress not only has a fabulous title, it also contains some excellent ideas, of which this is one.

I love the fact that this is an easy and low fat way to prepare chicken. The flesh is moist and full of flavour. Then there is the added bonus of having tasty stock made at the same time, which makes home made soups even better.

The slightly spicy aromatic flavour of this goes particularly well with Asian Vegetable Salad and a Vietnamese style dressing. Leftovers could be used for No-Carb Caesar Salad and a Chicken Noodle Soup.

You could use the same idea and cook just a single chicken breast, or a joint or two.

Calorie count for chicken poached in this way : 165kcals for 100 grams

  • 1 whole organic or free range chicken
  • 2 dried chillies
  • 3 star anise
  • 2.5cm of root ginger, cut into fine slices (no need to peel)
  • 2 or 3 spring onions, or leek trimmings
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 12 whole mixed peppercorns

Cold water, to cover.

Put the whole chicken into a large pan with the spices and flavourings and cover completely with cold water. Bring to the boil. Simmer very gently for 25 minutes, removing any scum that forms on the top. Then remove from the heat, cover with a lid and leave to cool in the liquid.

Lift out the chicken when completely cool and store in the fridge until ready to use.

Remove the flavourings from the stock with a slotted spoon and discard. Bring the stock to the boil and reduce to about half the volume. Then strain and refrigerate.

Use the stock for soups such as Piquant Leek Soup or Chicken Noodle Soup.

As an alternative to the Asian flavourings, you could poach the chicken with bay leaves, thyme, parsley, and onion.

Raw Vegetable Salad

Vegetable Salad with Vietnamese Dressing

Raw Vegetable Salad with Vietnamese Dressing

per person – 65 kcals

  • Handful of Rocket
  • 25g Celeriac, grated or cut in julienne strips
  • 1/4 Red sweet pepper, cut in strips
  • 1/4 Cucumber, sliced diagonally
  • 1 Celery stick, sliced diagonally
  • 1/2 Carrot, sliced into ribbons
  • 25g Broccoli, small florets
  • 1 tsp Sesame seeds, lightly toasted
  • Thai Basil or Coriander leaves, to garnish

Lay all the prepared vegetables on a platter and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

Serve with the white meat from Asian Poached Chicken, sliced.

Pour the dressing over the chicken and garnish with basil or coriander.

Other veggies you could use: bean shoots, finely sliced spring onions, raw beetroot strips, courgette ribbons, cauliflower florets, shredded cabbage.

Vietnamese Style Dressing

per person – 45 kcals

  • Juice and grated zest of 1/2 lime
  • a few drops of sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp Thai fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Tamari soy sauce
  • 1 tsp Chilli Dipping Sauce

Whisk together all the dressing ingredients.

Total for this dish, with 80g chicken: 240 kcals, with 100g chicken : 290 kcals

Before the Chicken, we had Simple Vegetable Soup (67 kcals). For dessert we had 30g of fromage blanc with a few cherries and a fine dusting of 100% chocolate (40 kcals). Total meal count : 350kcals for me, 400 kcals for my husband.

These recipes are taken from my book “Focus on Flavour – recipes inspired by living in South West France”

This recipe submitted to At Home with Mrs M! Mrs M’s Recipe Linky Party

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