I have a very good friend who is addicted to cola. Or maybe addicted is to big a word but it’s her drink of choice, always, everywhere. I have teased her about it plenty of times, but she’s persistent. Not only cola it has to be one brand and it has to be cola light. No other stuff please. About a year ago we were shopping and as usual I was browsing in the cookbook section of the bookstore when we spotted a little book in the shape of a cola bottle, that – you guessed it – was all about cooking with cola. H. took it home and she made something from the book but hated it completely.
In all honesty; she also hates cooking in general so the fact that she didn’t like the dish she made could have had something to do with the fact that she never really cooks. I’m just saying…
When I received the book Have you eaten by Billy Law, cola was the last thing on my mind, going through all those gorgeous recipes. You might know Billy from the Masterchef Australia series where he did quite well. He was in the season where they cooked for the Dalai Lama (I always forget which year is which but it is those things that stick in my mind!) At the time Billy stood out for me as he had a great way of cooking delicious Asian dishes plus he was also a foodblogger. That creates a bond doesn’t it?Billy styled, photographed and created all the recipes for the book and it is a wonderful mix of different recipes. A lot of the recipes have a Malaysian background but you will also find a lot of recipes from other parts of the world.
I was having a hard time deciding which recipe I was going to make first for the review as there are many I want to try. He also has a couple of delicious pork belly recipes there that I am dying to try out, especially since I have two pieces of pork belly in the freezer. However, pork belly takes a lot of time so I wanted to find a fairly quick recipe. And then I saw it ; Cola Chili Chicken… I just knew I had to make it!!
And you know what; it was surprisingly good. You have to know that I do not like cola at all. I never drink it nor do I drink any other fizzy drink (except the champagne variety..lol) so I wasn’t sure what to expect of this really quick and simple dish. It’s quite salty so be careful with adding extra salt here. It’s probably also due to my dark soy sauce being rather salty but it was still delicious.
- 500 gr boneless, skinless chicken tigh
- 1 tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
- 4 tbsp light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 red chili, thinly sliced
- 5 cm pc ginger, peeled and cut into 1m strips
- 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 335 ml can cola
- 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 1 spring onion, cut into slices
- handful of unsalted roasted cashew nuts
- Cut the chicken into bite size pieces and put in a bowl. Add the cornflour and 2 tbsp of light soy sauce and mix well. Place the chicken in the refridgerator to marinate for at least an hour.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook until browned all over, then add the chili, garlic and ginger and cook for another minute.
- Pour the cola into the frying pan, adding just enough to cover the chicken; the cola will fizz up. Add the dark soy sauce and the remaining light soy sauce and let it simmer for about 15 minutes or so, until the sauce has reduced to a syrupy consistency. It should be thick and sticky.
- Turn the heat of, add the spring onion and toasted cashews and give it a quick stir before serving. Serve with jasmine rice.
Have You Eaten? by Billy Law, £25 hardback, published by Hardie Grant, available at http://www.hardiegrant.co.uk/books/have-you-eaten-paperback
Monday 1st – http://simoneskitchen.net/
Tuesday 2nd – http://englishmum.com/
Wednesday 3rd – http://www.babaduck.com/
Thursday 4th – http://www.millycundall.com/
Friday 5th – http://breadetbutter.wordpress.com/
Disclaimer: I received the book from Hardie Grant for review purposes. All opinions expressed are my own