Australia Day this year just happens to fall on the same day as Chinese New Year. A dilemma for many as to which to celebrate, however I simply looked at it as a 3 day eating fest. On the 25th of January we had a Burns Supper of sorts with friends, on the 26th we had a Multicultural BBQ with friends and on the 27th we are having a Chinese New Year Dinner with family. The Multicultural BBQ was with my friend M (who is Austrian) and her kids (who are half Austrian and half Peruvian) and we had people from all different cultures all across the globe. Everyone would bring a dish from the home country and share it with others. It seemed only fitting given the multicultural nature of Australia.
M's Australia (temporary) tattoo
My contribution was Soya Sauce chicken with one of my mother's recipes. She doesn't give recipes out very often (three times only in fact) so I jumped on this immediately. I was also bringing Taramosalata and bringing the ingredients for shaved ice desserts which we would assemble while there (although the reasonably cool weather and the cracker of a cake that M made meant that this wasn't necessary in the end).
This is a recipe that is so simple to make but so satisfying. I like this chicken with plain boiled rice or if I'm feeling particularly needy or cold, with some noodle soup and greens. The amount of water will determine how thick your sauce or gravy is, I personally prefer the sauce moderately thick, not so thick that it is sticky but definitely not runny so that it is like water. And for this recipe I try and overcome my fear of the smell of raw chicken.
The amount of gravy or sauce made is quite a lot. However the sauce is quite versatile. I love it ladled over rice and I also add a few tablespoons of it into a clear noodle broth to give it a depth of flavour. I cook these for 30 minutes or more, just because I like my chicken quite well done (I have a fear of biting into chicken and finding pink) and also so that it eases off the bone nicely. And what I do if I make this for myself is pierce the skin of the chicken wings and drumsticks so that the flavour goes right through to the chicken meat give it that delicious smoky brown hue. It's not as "pretty" as when you leave the skin intact but the pleasure is purely in the eating.
_Beef rendang from A&N
Chicken tagine from T&M
With our Multicultural Australia Day we had a wide variety of countries represented from: Austria, Peru, Persia, Italy, Malaysia, Algeria, Lebanon, Singapore, Hong Kong and Finland. We feasted on a fabulous range of food ranging from a deliciously flavoured chicken tagine (Algeria), a beautifully fragrant and spiced beef rendang (Malaysia), 2 types of delicious Persian rice (one with crispy bread at the bottom and a saffron rice with redberries, both a must try from Persia), a delicately dressed rocket salad (Italy), a sweet carrot salad, my soy chicken wings (Singapore and Hong Kong) and to end off a most spectacular Malakoff torte from Austria. And everyone, even though we may not have met before and were from vastly different backgrounds we all got on so well that it was a shame when we all had to leave. Australia Day doesn't get much better than this.
_Soy wings from me
_Persian rice from S&S
Persian saffron rice from S&S
_Rocket salad from M&P
Carrot salad by M
Malakoff torte by M
Happy Australia Day everyone! :)
Lots of love,
NQN's mum's Soya sauce chicken wings
- 4 tablespoons light soya sauce
- 4 tablespoons dark soya sauce
- 8 flat tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 cups of water (plus more if you like your gravy thin)
- 1.5kgs/3 pounds chicken wings
Step 1 - In a very large saucepan or wok (I used my large 36cm cast iron wok), stir fry chicken pieces briefly to brown lightly
Step 2 - Add in the rest of the above ingredients (soya sauces, water and sugar).
Chicken after being cooked for 5 minutes on high
Step 3 - Cook on high for 5 minutes. Then let it simmer until cooked (about 30 minutes). Add more water if necessary.
After half an hour of cooking