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Oriental Chicken and Mushroom Stew

ingredients

serves 4
300 g (10 oz) boned chicken, with skin
4 large mushrooms, wiped
2 medium carrots
175 g (7 oz) fresh or canned bean sprouts
4 small potatoes, scrubbed
5 cm (2 in) square tofu (optional)
15 - 30 ml (1 - 2 tbsp) vegetable oil
225 ml (8 fl oz) well-flavoured chicken stock
30 g (2 tbsp) sugar
30 ml (2 tbsp) dry sherry
45 ml (3 tbsp) soy sauce
50 g (2 oz) mangetout
cress to garnish

method

1. Cut the chicken into 2 cm (3/4 in) cubes.

2. Wash and trim the vegetables and cut into small chunks.

3. For the best flavour, the vegetables should then be parboiled separately in lightly salted water, rinsed and drained.

4. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over high heat.

5. Drop the chicken pieces into the oil and stir-fry to coat in oil.

6. Add the carrots and tofu, if using, and then the mushrooms, bean sprouts and potatoes.

7. Stir-fry for 3 minutes, until the chicken and vegetables are lightly cooked and evenly coated with oil.

8. Ladle the stock over them, add the sugar, dry sherry and soy sauce, and bring to a boil.

9. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes, until the simmering stock is glossy and reduced by one-third.

10. Trim the mangetout and slice diagonally into 2.5 cm (1 in) slices.

11. Parboil them in lightly salted water, and add to the chicken and vegetables just before serving.

12. Serve hot or at room temperature in individual bowls, arranging the vegetables attractively.

13. Garnish with cress.

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