Kai Aw (Lao Chicken Stew)

  • 1.5 kg Chicken
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1tbsp Oil
  • 2 medium Onions
  • 1 stalk lemon grass
  • 4 small round aubergines
  • 250 gm Minced meat
  • salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • Bouquet garni of 1 tsp szechuan pepper-corns
  • 2 chillie
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup sliced Shitake mushroom (use rehydrated mushroom)
  • 1/2 tsp ground Cumin seed
  • 1 tsp ground Coriander seed
  • 4tbsp cooked sticky rice as flattened cakes 1 cm thick (1/2 in) and toasted until brownish
  • 1 cup thick coconut milk
  • 2 cups Thin coconut milk
  1. Wash and dry chicken well, then rub it inside and out with salt and half the crushed garlic
  2. Heat oil in frying pan, fry remaining garlic and half the onions with the mince meat
  3. Season with salt, pepper and chilli
  4. When meat has been fried well, add coriander powder, lemon grass and thick coconut milk
  5. Bring to simmering point, add the toasted stocky rice in small pieces (~1 cm), aubergines, chillies and bouquet garni.  Simmer until cooked then reduce heat and let cool
  6. Chop the onion finely
  7. Put the oil in saucepan large enough to hold the amount of liquid
  8. Add remaining onions and fry gently for 5 minutes, stirring frequently
  9. Add mushrooms, coriander and cumin and continue to stir for a few minutes
  10. Add salt and pepper, then cover saucepan, turn heat very low and allow to cook for 10 minutes, lifting lid and stirring two or three times
  11. Add hot water and stock cubes and bring to the boil
  12. Simmer for 10 minutes
  13. Remove the bouquet garni.
  14. Add milk and allow to come to the boil once more, stirring occasionally
  15. Mix corn flour with cold water and add to the soup off the heat, then return to heat and stir constantly until it boils and thickens
  16. Serve immediately, sprinkled with coriander leaves