Great for a weeknight dinner, this Vietnamese baked chicken with lime is an easy meal that requires very little active work.Measure, mince, and pour, then let it sit.Once it’s finished marinating, all you have to do is cook it for half an hour. The ginger and garlic are warm and spicy, while the chili garlic sauce has a bit of a kick. The lime adds brightness and a citrusy tang that complements the spicy flavors and cools them down.
The original recipe called for chili garlic paste, palm sugar, and fish sauce.And, it’s true, those ingredients would be more authentic. However, they also violate my own rules about avoidinghard-to-find or one use ingredients.I don’t want to buy an entire bottle or brick of something (like palm sugar) just to have it sit there. And where would I even find palm sugar? Nope.
So, I cheated.I used chili garlic sauce (not paste), swapped brown sugar for palm sugar, and ditched the fish sauce in favor of Worcestershire sauce (which does have some anchovies in it). I also wanted (for personal preference) to avoid all the salt in the fish sauce.
Marinating, even for a short time, helps the chicken absorb lots of flavor. Just don’t let it sit too long or it will get mushy from the citrus.
When you’re ready to start cooking, just pour out the marinade, pop the chicken in the oven, and wait half an hour. Dinner is done!
1 chicken thigh (leave the skin and bone in place)
1T soy sauce
1 T Worcestershire sauce (if you like fish sauce, use that)
1 T brown sugar
3/4 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce
1 tsp lime juice, freshly squeezed
1/4 tsp lime zest
1 clove garlic, minced
1 T cooking oil
lIn a small bowl, mix the marinade ingredients (soy sauce, Worcestershire, sugar, ginger, chili garlic sauce, lime juice and zest, garlic and oil). Pour that into a zip lock bag, and add the chicken. Close the bag, and shake it around so the marinade covers the chicken.Let that sit for half an hour, or up to four hours (in the fridge).
About fifteen minutes before you’re ready to cook, remove the tray from your toaster oven and line it with foil. Then preheat the toaster oven to 425 degrees. Also take the chicken out of the fridge to come to room temperature.
Take the chicken out of the bag and set it on top of a wire rack, skin side up, and then place the rack over the lined toaster oven tray. This will reduce cleanup a bit and help keep the chicken from getting soggy.
Bake for about 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven and let the chicken rest for five minutes. Serve with rice and garnish with lime.
Vietnamese Baked Chicken with Lime Substitutions and Variations
add some soy sauce to the marinade
swap the lime zest for lemongrass (you can buy lemongrass paste, which is easier to find in western markets than the stalks)
chop up some cilantro and add that to the marinade
if you do like fish sauce, I’m told Red Boat and Three Crabs are good brands (avoid the Taste of Thai, it’s full of sugar)
I’ve been fighting the creeping crud and nothing helps fight germs better than a big bowl of soup, preferably spicy soup. This Chinese chicken noodle cabbage soup is perfect. The spicy broth clears the sinuses, the garlic, ginger and chili sauce have antibiotic qualities, and it tastes good too.
I adapted the recipe from a recipe I found on Epicurious. It’s not just smaller quantities though. My version has less sugar, and is a bit spicier (I wanted the heat more than sweetness). Gotta fight those germs! Also, since I didn’t have tahini handy (and wouldn’t want to buy it just for this), I ditched that and used peanut butter instead. I didn’t have seasoned rice vinegar either, so I substituted the regular kind. Their recipe cooked the chicken by boiling it in the soup. I decided I wanted more complex, caramelized flavor, so I cooked it with the cabbage. And, since I didn’t have sherry I reasoned that since sherry was essentially fortified wine, that some red wine and a drizzle of honey would work just fine. It did!
This is enough for one generous serving, or two smaller ones, depending on how hungry you are.
This is great for lots of recipes: put it in Chinese eggplant with garlic sauce, chili citrus chicken thighs, sesame noodles, or add a kick to scrambled eggs or meatloaf. Or, mix it into mayonnaise for chili aioli.
This is just about essential for Asian cooking. Use it in this recipe, or for an Asian cole slaw. Baste meat with it, or combine it with some soy sauce, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, and scallions for a quick dipping sauce.
This recipe for chicken mango stir fry combines the sweetness of mango and bell peppers with the heat of hot chile. The combination gives it plenty of eye appeal, as well as flavor. This is easy to put together, and flexible too. Use snap peas or snow peas instead of regular peas, if you prefer. Add more fresh chiles, try some mini corn cobs, or give it a Thai spin with lime, cilantro, and basil.
Unless you’re baking bread or cake (which are less forgiving) the idea is to have fun with your food. Change the ingredients to suit your own tastes, or to fit whatever you happen to have in the fridge that day.
You can put this together in about 20 minutes, so it’s a great option when you’re in a hurry.
I used fresh vegetables, but you can just grab a package of mixed frozen Asian veggies and use that instead. That will save some time too and cut the whole thing down to fifteen minutes.
I got the mango from the frozen section at Trader Joe’s. If you can’t go to Trader Joe’s, many supermarkets have it in the frozen food section. If that doesn’t work, try pineapple instead.
I wouldn’t use the frozen bell peppers though, they tend to be soggy.
As colorful as it is tasty, this Asian chicken salad with cabbage proved to be an inspired invention. I was sick and didn’t feel like cooking much, plus I could hardly taste anything. This colorful, spicy salad helped improve my appetite. It looked pretty (with the cabbage, peppers, and carrots), and I could taste it! It was also a good way to keep using up the giant cabbage I got from FreshDirect.
The dressing is straight from a recipe I found online in The New York Times recipe section. I don’t like a lot of dressing, so this made about 4 servings of dressing for me. Your mileage may vary.
This chicken salad is pretty easy to make, and you can quickly make the Asian dressing in advance if you like.
Before I got sick I had defrosted a chicken thigh that I had to use up, so I just seasoned that with ginger, garlic, a bit of soy sauce, and some sriracha. Then all I had to do was pop it in the oven for an hour. Easy!
The recipe would work just fine with leftover rotisserie chicken, or even some leftover Chinese pork.
If you don’t want meat, you could add cold noodles, ramen noodles, slivered almonds, or extra veggies.
A slightly spicy, bright, and colorful asian chicken salad that's hard to resist (even when you're sick).
1/4 C red cabbage, shredded
1 carrot, cut in chunks, or shredded
4-5 mini bell peppers, top removed, and sliced
1/8 (about an inch or two) seedless cucumber
1 chicken leg or thigh
1 garlic clove, chopped fine
1 tsp fresh ginger, chopped
3 T rice vinegar
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp brown sugar
5 T canola oil
2 T sesame oil
Season the chicken and bake in a 350 degree oven for one hour. Remove and let sit until it is cool enough to handle.
Prepare the veggies and mix them together in a large bowl.
Make the dressing by combining all the ingredients in a mini-chopper and pulsing until all the ingredients are chopped up and mixed together.
Once the chicken has cooled, remove the meat from the bone.
Put the veggies and chicken in a large bowl and pour the dressing over it.
I included the cooking time for the chicken in the recipe preparation notes. If you use pre-cooked chicken the whole thing will be finished in 15 minutes.
I had a big bag of mini mixed bell peppers, so I used those (they also helped make the food look more appealing) and a seedless cucumber, so that’s what I used.
You could use regular bell peppers, add snow peas, mushrooms, or regular cucumbers too. Food should be flexible, and unless it’s baking, you should adjust recipes to fit what you have or what you prefer to eat.
More Single Serving and Small Batch Cabbage, Chicken, and Asian Recipes
I use this all the time. It’s so much easier than dragging out a big food processor. And, with space at a premium, it’s a lot easier to store it too. Use it for the dressing, to chop garlic or onions, cut up potatoes, and make pesto without making a big mess.
Huy Fong, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, 17 Ounce Bottle This stuff has become so popular it’s almost a cliché, but it’s also versatile enough to use in eggs, salads, meatballs, or on chicken. Just a little bit adds a big punch of flavor, without being too spicy or too sweet.
It’s creeping crud season, and while I’m not quite sick, I’m definitely not feeling quite well either. I was browsing through Pinterest and spotted a spicy beef noodle soup recipe. I was about to save it when I realized I already had one! So I made that instead.
The beauty of this is that it’s really easy, and quick, as well as being spicy (good for fighting germs), hot (the steam is good for fighting congestion) and comforting on a cold day. I sort of got this recipe from my online friend Terry. She had posted a “recipe” (no amounts or detailed directions, just the ingredients) for a spicy beef noodle soup that sounded awfully good.
She used red pepper which I didn’t have, as well as a specialty Korean chili sauce (which I also didn’t have). However, cooking is part following what someone else is done, part inspiration, and part improvisation, so I went with improvisation.
I did have cabbage, and I also had leftover steak, sriracha, and chili garlic sauce. I figured those would work just fine for my beef noodle soup.
If you don’t have turkey stock, you could use beef or even chicken if you prefer (see improvisation!). If you want to make your own turkey stock, the recipe is here.
Either way, once you have the stock, the rest of the soup is really easy to make and only needs a few ingredients.
Start the noodles first, then while they’re cooking, heat the stock in a separate pot and add the other ingredients. Or, you could throw everything (except the steak!) in one pot. If you do, the noodles will absorb a lot of the liquid, so you’ll need more.
Since I had the leftover steak, I didn’t even have to cook that. If you don’t, cook that while the noodles are cooking, and then add it to the soup at the last minute.
Another thing about this spicy beef noodle soup is that with all that garlicky, spicy goodness it will kill any germs that may be plaguing you!
I love this stuff. It’s got a stronger kick, and less sugar, than the sriracha, plus the extra heat (and spiciness) from garlic. It’s great in meatloaf, on eggs, in soup, or in a sauce. Think garlicky salsa.
Huy Fong, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, 17 Ounce Bottle If you prefer a hint of sweetness, you might like this instead of the chili garlic sauce (or use them both). Squeeze it over eggs, into soup, on enchiladas, or burritos. It’s also good for stir-fry. Think of it as ketchup with a kick.