Three cup chicken (san bei ji)

Three cup chicken (san bei ji)

Named so because it traditionally contains equal parts shaoxing wine, soy sauce and sesame oil, this super-speedy Chinese (specifically Jiangxi province) chicken dish from Yvonne Poon is well worth trying. It’s a recipe that’s incredibly popular in Taiwan – and across the world.

Three cup chicken (san bei ji)

While modern recipes no longer contain equal quantities of each ‘cup’ (that would be an awful lot of oil!), the simplicity and speed of the recipe belies its incredible flavour.

 

  • Serves icon Serves 4
  • Time icon Hands on time 15 minutes

Named so because it traditionally contains equal parts shaoxing wine, soy sauce and sesame oil, this super-speedy Chinese (specifically Jiangxi province) chicken dish from Yvonne Poon is well worth trying. It’s a recipe that’s incredibly popular in Taiwan – and across the world.

While modern recipes no longer contain equal quantities of each ‘cup’ (that would be an awful lot of oil!), the simplicity and speed of the recipe belies its incredible flavour.

 

Nutrition: Per serving (without rice)

Calories
384kcals
Fat
24g (4.8g saturated)
Protein
28g
Carbohydrates
12g (8.5g sugars)
Fibre
0.5g
Salt
1.9g

Ingredients

  • 600g skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • ¼ tsp ground white pepper
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 slices fresh ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 1 spring onion, quartered
  • 1 red chilli, sliced
  • 3 tbsp shaoxing wine
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp palm sugar (see Tips)
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • Handful thai basil leaves (see Tips)
  • Cooked jasmine rice to serve
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Method

  1. Put the chicken in a bowl and sprinkle with half the cornflour, all the white pepper and a pinch of salt. Mix thoroughly and set aside.
  2. Heat the vegetable oil in a large wok or frying pan over a high heat. Once smoking hot, add the ginger, garlic, spring onion and red chilli and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the chicken, turn the heat down slightly and fry for 4 minutes – don’t stir the chicken too much as you want to get a nice sear on the outside of the meat.
  3. Once the chicken is nicely browned all over, pour in the shaoxing wine, both soy sauces, palm sugar and 3 tbsp water. Turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and cook for 3-4 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the remaining 1 tsp cornflour with 2 tsp cold water.
  4. Pour in the sesame oil, followed by the cornflour mixture and stir until the sauce thickens. Toss in most of the basil, stir to wilt, then serve with rice and garnish with the remaining basil.

Nutrition

Calories
384kcals
Fat
24g (4.8g saturated)
Protein
28g
Carbohydrates
12g (8.5g sugars)
Fibre
0.5g
Salt
1.9g

delicious. tips

  1. If you can’t find palm sugar, use coconut sugar or soft brown sugar (use a little less as it’s sweeter). If you can’t get thai basil, use regular basil.

  2. The key to success for any wok-based dish is to make sure all your ingredients are prepped and ready before you begin, as everything cooks very quickly.

Buy ingredients online

Recipe By

Yvonne Poon

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