Vietnamese-style Roast Chicken & Green Onion Dirty Rice

You are getting two recipes out of this one dish – a delicious rice accompaniment to the roast chicken. The two pair very well because the rice picks up all of the flavours of the chicken left in the pan in which it was cooked. Cook some plain rice – regular white, parboiled, Basmati, Jasmine or brown rice, just as long as it is cooked plain. For this recipe, I prefer to use the absorption method of cooking rice.

In order to get the full flavour of the seasoning ingredients, the chicken will need to be marinated overnight. No skipping on this part of the recipe.

For the green onions, use either the purple-head shallots or the white-head ones. I find the purple-head shallots/scallions have more flavour.

The two-step cooking of this chicken requires that it starts on the stovetop and then finishes in the oven. Therefore, you want to use a large frying pan that can go from the stovetop to the oven. However, if you don’t have such a pan, you can cook the chicken in your regular pan and then transfer it to a heated baking dish to cook in the oven.

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT

Large zip bag

Large ovenproof pan that can go from stovetop to oven

INGREDIENTS

For Roast chicken:

  • 1½ teaspoons white or brown sugar

    Vietnamese-style Roast Chicken (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1½ tablespoons regular soy sauce
  • 1½ tablespoons fish sauce (or salt to taste)
  • 1½ tablespoons canola oil, plus extra to cook chicken
  • 4 – 5 garlic cloves, very finely minced or grated to a paste
  • 6 chicken thighs bone-in and skin on, rinsed and pat dry (see notes)

For Green Onion Dirty Rice:

  • 4 cups cooked rice
  • ¾ cup thinly sliced green onions (purple/white and green parts)
  • 2 tablespoons water or chicken stock

DIRECTIONS

For Roast chicken:

  1. Roast Chicken with Green Onion Dirty Rice (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)

    Mix together the sugar, black pepper, soy sauce, fish sauce, garlic and oil.

  2. Place chicken into zip bag. Pour marinade into bag with chicken, close bag and press to remove excess air. Shake things around to ensure that the marinade gets all over the chicken. Put the bag on a plate and put in fridge to marinate overnight 12 – 16 hours. It can marinate for as long as 24 hours.
  3. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and bring it to room temperature before cooking.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  5. On medium heat, heat 1½ tablespoons of oil in a pan and add chicken (shake off excess marinade), skin side down. Let cook for 6 – 8 minutes. Turn chicken over and cook for 2 – 3 minutes (Reduce heat a little if you think it is too high).
  6. Drain off excess oil from pan-frying of chicken leaving just a thin film of oil. Arrange the chicken skin-side up in the pan, transfer to the oven and cook for 30 – 40 minutes or until the chicken is done.
  7. Remove from the pan from the oven, transfer the chicken to a platter and set aside in a warm place.

For Green onion Dirty Rice:

  1. Once the chicken has been removed from the pan, remove any pieces of burnt garlic that you see and drain any excess grease, leaving just a little bit to lightly coat the bottom of the pan.
  2. Put the pan on medium heat and add green onions, sauté for 2 – 3 minutes.
  3. Deglaze pan with 2 tablespoons water or chicken stock and heat through, let it bubble and thicken a little.
  4. Add rice and salt and pepper to taste and fold in with green onions
  5. Remove from heat and serve with chicken.

NOTES

  1. Salt for the dish comes from the soy sauce and fish sauce, however, if you do not have fish sauce, add regular table salt to taste. Taste the marinade anyway before adding the chicken and adjust as you find necessary.
  2. You can use a whole chicken cut up for this recipe but be sure to increase the amount of ingredients for the marinade and let the chicken marinate for 24 hours.
  3. If your pan is not large, work in batches when cooking the chicken. If you do not have a pan that goes from the stovetop to the oven, simply put your ovenproof dish to heat while the chicken is cooking on the stovetop. Carefully remove the hot pan and add the chicken then return the pan to the oven for the chicken to cook through.

Rolled Slow Roasted Pork With Crackling

This roast is simple and easy to make.  And on every occasion, it is a winner. Tender meat with crisp savoury crackling, what’s not to like?

You’ll need the help of your butcher to get the right cut of meat because it needs to be deboned for easy rolling, and the skin and fat scored. The piece of meat you will need is a combination of the pork flap (the cut belly part) and part of the spare ribs, however, depending on how large a piece of meat you get, it may also include a piece of the loin. Have the butcher remove all the bones for you and score the meat making ½ to 1-inch cuts of the skin and fat crisscross (as is done with ham) or the scoring can simply be done diagonally. You can certainly do the scoring yourself with the use of a new razor or X-Acto knife (if you have one).

Slow Roasted Pork (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)

To season the meat, use your favourite brand of dry all-purpose seasoning. For this recipe, I use Chief’s All-Purpose seasoning which has enough salt so there is no need for additional salt.

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT

  • Roasting pan with a rack (line pan with foil before inserting rack)
  • Kitchen string
  • Large plastic bags

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 pounds de-boned, skin on pork that has been scored (flap/belly and part spare ribs)
  • All-purpose seasoning

DIRECTIONS

  1. Roast Pork with Crackling
    (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)

    Rinse the meat, pat very dry and place on baking sheet or large cutting board. Season with all-purpose seasoning on both sides; be sure to get some of the seasoning in the cut skin and fat. Do not neglect the edges of the meat either.

  2. Transfer the meat to a large plastic bag and tie securely. Double bag the meat and place in the refrigerator to marinate for 24 hours. It can be marinated for up to 48 hours and no less than 16 hours.
  3. Bring the meat to room temperature before cooking. This is important to ensure even cooking.
  4. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
  5. Roll the meat (using the longer side) to create a log. Tie in several places with kitchen string. Transfer the meat to pan with rack and place in oven. Cook for 5½ hours at 300 degrees F and raise the heat to 500 degrees F and roast for ½ hour or until the skin puffs up and feels hard, and hollow when tapped. Remove pan from oven and let rest for at least 1 hour before removing cracking and cutting meat to serve.

NOTE

If you are making a larger or smaller roast, use the following cooking guide: for each pound, cook at 300 degrees F and raise the heat to 500 degrees F only for the last half hour of the overall cooking time. For example, if you are making a 3½ pound roast, cook at 300 degrees F for 3 hours and at 500 degrees F for the ½ hour.

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