Friday, January 4, 2013

Dukan Chicken Hekka

Chicken Hekka
A note about this dish -- for us, hekka is more about the sauce -- if you can't find bamboo shoots and other asian ingredients, feel free to use other veggies!

Another healthy recipe!  This recipe was ok -- but let us explain!

Chicken Hekka is something the female half of this couple grew up on.  I believe it was first cooked during the Hawaii Plantation, easy, nutritious, inexpensive, etc.  I've never seen Hekka on menus in Japan.  Back to our explanation -- our family ate Chicken Hekka at least once a month...sometimes more.  It was made with chicken thighs, canned bamboo shoots, canned button mushrooms and canned shirataki noodles (not tofu shirataki, but regular shirataki noodles.  When on sale, most of these ingredients were fairly inexpensive and you ended up with leftovers.  You can add other things like won bok (Napa Cabbage), other greens and you can even use beef although we never did.

Instead of making Hekka they way my family's made it for years, I decided to try someone else's Hekka sauce recipe and hindsight, I should have known it would be too salty for called for a LOT of shoyu or soy sauce.  Actually, I do not have a recipe per se for Hekka -- we always, threw the chicken pieces in our wok, stir fried it, add the veggies, stir fried, then added soy sauce (you know, eyeballing it) then a little sugar (again, eyeballing it and of course, tasting it to see if we got the taste down).

We'll leave it up to you if you want to try this recipe.  We watered down the sauce significantly and it actually tasted better two days later when we used the sauce to cook beef and bamboo shoots.

We're classifying this recipe as a Dukan recipe even though it has a tablespoon of sake in it...we actually never used sake in our family hekka so you can leave it out if you like.  We're also considering this a Paleo - ish recipe since we used Tamari Gluten Free Soy Sauce (still have to transfer my two bottles of Bragg's Amino Liquid to the male half's house).  We're not sure if water chestnuts and bamboo shoots are on the Paleo or Dukan list, but it was a healthy dinner and I ended up dropping some weight this weekend!

Serves 2 - 4 (two if you're in Cruise or on the Paleo diet and eat this by itself, 4 if you're in Consolidation and are having some sort of whole wheat starch)
Prep Time: 10-15 minutes
Cook Time: approx 20 minutes

1.25 lbs of chicken thighs, cubed (we would have just used 1 pound but we were in the Japanese market and they had chicken thighs cut up to make karaage or Japanese fried chicken so we bough the precut pack and removed as much fat as we could.
2 bamboo shoots, sliced (try to use fresh, we had canned ones on hand and wanted to use up)
1/2 can water chestnuts, sliced (optional)
8 pieces of won bok or Napa Cabbage or a similar green, sliced into small pieces
1 pkg. shirataki noodles (or tofu shirataki noodles) - depending on how strict you are on Paleo, you can omit the noodles if you aren't including these in your diet
a handful of mizuna cut into 2 inch pieces (optional, it was on sale this week)
1/2 c. Reduced Sodium Tamari Gluten Free Soy Sauce or Bragg's Amino Liquid (this was too salty for us - we ended up adding in about 2 - 2/12 c. of water, so you may want to start with 1/4 c. or less until you find a taste you like)
1 T. sake (optional)
1-2 T. natural sweetener (we used xylitol, although some Paleo peeps wouldn't agree on the use of xylitol), taste as you add
2 T. green onions, chopped

Other items you can add: shiitake mushrooms (sliced), button mushrooms (whole or sliced), tofu (if you're not on the Paleo diet), etc.

Mix Tamari (soy sauce or Bragg's Amino Liquid) with the sake and natural sweetener in a bowl -- see note above, start with small amounts of your soy sauce choice or else you may end up adding a lot of water like we did.

Depending on which diet you are, you can use non stick spray (Dukan) or a little bit your choice of fat if you're on the Paleo Diet -- to your pan over medium high heat.  Add chicken to pan and stir fry until 30% cooked.  Add veggies to your pan, cook until soft (usually just a couple minutes).  Add shirataki noodles, mix.  Add sauce, mix and let simmer for about 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked.

Serve as is for a Dukan Cruise meal or a Paleo meal or with brown rice if you're in Dukan Consolidation.  We ate this as a Dukan Cruise/Paleo - ish meal so it fed just the two of us for one meal.

NOTE:  We kept the leftover sauce and used it for a throw together Beef Hekka the next night.

Enjoy...we sure did!

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