This is a true treat for a fast dinner bursting with Chinese flavors. What's even cooler? You can use your cauliflower, other veggies from your fridge and just chop them up into small pieces to create a "rice". For example, I had some crumbs of broccoli left, a half of a turnip root, a quarter of a yellow summer squash, and a few cauliflower florets that I used to make my fried rice. Carrots would also work well. They add a little more carbs to the dish; however, they also add color, texture, and a hint of sweetness. This recipes serves 2. Just double, or triple as needed.
Oil Poached Chicken
First things first, we did a simple oil poaching technique using extra virgin olive oil. Ideally, you want enough to cover both chicken breasts. If you're hesitant about using so much of your oil on one dish, don't worry. 1, you can use the oil again just by preserving it in a jar in the fridge. 2, you can do a shallow poach only covering half of the chicken, you'll just need to turn the chicken over, half-way during the cooking process. This technique gives you non-oily, tender and juicy chicken breasts. You can also use boneless, skinless chicken thighs.
The key is to use a small pan, the larger the pan, the more oil you'll use. Also, keep the heat low. If taken, the oil temperature should be around 180 degrees. On most stoves, you can do this by fixing the stove dial between low and medium heat. Just allow it to heat up, testing the oil with your wooden spoon or thermometer. Once tiny bubbles start to form around the wooden spoon, you're ready to submerge the chicken. You can also use this technique
If the oil poaching is not something you want to try this time, you can skip this part, prepare your breasts however you normally do so, and proceed to the rest of the recipe.
Oil-Poached Chicken Breasts -
Enough extra virgin olive oil to cover chicken breasts
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, unsalted
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and lightly smashed
1 bay leaf (or rosemary sprig, or thyme sprig)
Heat oil, lemon, garlic, and bay leaf over low-medium heat, until it reaches just under 200 degrees, or tiny bubbles form when a wooden spoon is inserted.
Lower in both chicken pieces, they should be covered by oil. If not, you'll just need to flip them once every 5-7 minutes, about 2 times. Depending on the thickness of your breasts, this should take about 10-15 minutes to complete. This is a slower-cooking process. Cover the pot between turning.
After fully cooked, (you can test by removing from oil and trying to shred them into large strips), set the chicken to the side in a bowl, allowing it to rest for 5 minutes.
Using your hands or two forks, pull the chicken into large shreds (see image above).
1/2 cup soy sauce (light or reduced sodium is fine)
3 TBS white or Chinese cooking wine (or rice vinegar) (Sub: white wine vinegar + 1/2 tsp sugar)
2 tsp fish sauce (optional)
2 tsp lime juice
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp garlic, minced (jarred or tube garlic is fine, or powder)
2 tsp ginger, minced (jarred or tube ginger is fine, or powder)
2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 TBS green onion or scallions chopped (optional)
1 red chili pepper or mini red sweet or bell pepper, thinly sliced (optional)
Add all of the ingredients together in a mixing bowl, whisk and set aside.
Fried Vegetable "Rice"
3 cups raw fresh veggies, chopped small (Suggested: Cauliflower, broccoli, yellow squash, zucchini, turnips, carrot, other firm veggies)
1 tsp course sea salt
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp white pepper (optional)
2 TBS oil (you can also use the oil from poaching the chicken)
Chop raw veggies into tiny pieces (see above). Spread them out on a large plate and sprinkle with sea salt. Allow them to sit for about 10 minutes, until water starts to extract from them. Then gently blot with paper towel.
Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
Add veggies, powders, pepper, and soy sauce. Occasionally, toss around until veggies are very lightly browned 4-5 mins. Remove from heat and place on a serving platter for two, or divide between two individual plates.
Garnish with lime wedges if you'd like and top with your protien.
Bringing It All Together...
Place poached chicken pieces over vegetable rice.
Pour your soy-ginger sauce over the chicken and rice
Garnish with lime wedges, chopped green onion (or scallions), and cilantro (optional).