Living in Taiwan has one major perk: FOOD. The abundance of tasty and affordable food is crazy. As a foodie, I would say I am in heaven. Wherever you go, there is something new to try. At almost every street corner there is a tiny stand selling filled pancakes, dumplings or other Taiwanese snacks. Let’s just say, you will definitely not starve in Taiwan. Also, if you consider going on a diet while making a trip to Taiwan: Just don’t.
Even with all the temptation of all the ready-made meals surrounding me, I still enjoy strolling through the supermarket and buying some fresh ingredients to cook at home on the weekends. There are times when I literally spend hours at the grocery store just looking at things. Well, to make myself sound less like a geek, I have to say that my Chinese is not amazing and therefore it sometimes takes me a while to understand what is written on the packaging.
As it is one of the most traditional dishes, I tried to make some three cup chicken 三杯雞 (san bei ji | Taiwanese: sam poe ke). The 3 cups refer to the three main ingredients of the sauce: rice wine, soy sauce and sesame oil.
- 150 g short-grain rice (preferably arborio or carnaroli)
- 600 ml (or as needed) vegetable stock
- 80 ml dry white wine (e.g. pinot grigio)
- 1 onion (chopped)
- 2 cloves of garlic (peeled and crushed)
- 2 cloves of garlic (chopped)
- 4 - 5 large shiitake mushrooms (sliced)
- 200g green beans (cut)
- 150g grated parmesan cheese (parmigiano reggiano)
- olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Boil water. Add the green beans and cook until tender (about 5 minutes). Drain and dump in ice water. Set aside.
- Heat a knob of butter in large pan on medium-high. Add the crushed garlic and the shiitake mushrooms and cook until they get soft but not mushy. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Using the same pan, add some more butter and some olive oil and add the garlic and onions. Stir and cook until the onions get soft.
- Add the rice and keep stirring until the rice starts to crackle.
- Add the wine slowly and keep stirring until all of the liquid is gone.
- Start adding the stock with a ladle. One ladle at a time.
- Cook and stir until the rice gets dry before you add more stock.
- Keep repeating this process until the rice is tender. This should take about 20 - 25 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the beans and the mushrooms and the parmesan and mix everything evenly.
Enjoy and let me know what you think!