Shredded Chicken with Garlic Sauce

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One of the special dishes of the Sichuan region of China. It can be served at room temperature or made in advance and served cold. It can be served on its own as a main course with rice or as part of a larger Chinese meal. Replace the chicken with cooked turkey – Omit steps 1 and 2 and add the sliced cooked meat to the sauce at step 4. It’s so easy.

Serves 4


3 chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic, minced finely
2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely minced
2 spring onions, green part only, finely chopped (save some for garnish)
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon chilli oil
80ml light soy sauce


1. Place the chicken breasts in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring the water to the boil and discard it. (This gets rid of any impurities and gives the chicken a cleaner taste.)

2. Add more cold water to the pan to cover the chicken. Bring back to the boil and simmer for 9 to 12 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Test by making a cut in the centre of each breast and checking that there is no pink and that the juices run clear. Drain the chicken breasts and cool to room temperature.

3. While the chicken is cooling, mix the rest of the ingredients together to make the garlic sauce (reserving some of the spring onions to garnish the dish at the end).

4. Slice the chicken into fine strands (see our photograph), arrange on a serving plate and drizzle over the garlic sauce. Sprinkle over the spring onions.

Recipe variations

You can also stir-fry this dish in a wok.

1. Cut the raw chicken breasts in half lengthways. Cut the chicken into thick strips, then cut each strip into finer strips (see the photograph).

2. Heat a tablespoon of peanut oil in a wok until almost smoking.

3. Add the chicken and stir-fry for a few minutes until almost cooked through.

4. Add the sauce ingredients and stir-fry for another minute until the chicken is done. Keep everything moving so that the chicken doesn’t brown.


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