Serves 4-6 depending on serving size.
Cooking a whole chicken gives soups/stews incredible flavor and added nutrition. This is a simple dish that is packed with nutrition and incredible, pleasant flavor.
1 whole organic whole chicken
Fresh ground black pepper
1 small dried Thai chili pepper (also called a red bird’s eye chili) If you buy fresh- stem it, seed it, and split it in half lengthwise
1 stalk lemongrass, outer layer removed, and pounded with a meat mallet
1 4inch piece peeled ginger root, cut into slices
4 kaffir lime leaves, optional
6 heads baby bok choy rinsed and cut in half lengthwise or 1/2 bunch regular bok choy
Rinse chicken and pat dry. Season it inside and out with salt and pepper to taste and place in a large dutch oven or stock pot along with the chili pepper, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves and ginger. Cover the chicken with filtered water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook on medium-low for about an hour. As it simmers, skim off any foam or fat on the surface.
Check chicken for doneness (it should be falling off the bone) and turn off the heat. Let sit for 30 minutes then transfer the chicken to a large strainer. Discard the solids.
When chicken is cool enough to handle, remove all of the meat from the bones trying to keep the pieces in large chunks. Add back in with the broth and re-heat at medium-high heat until it begins to boil. Add in the bok choy and cook for 5-6 minutes. Add more sea salt and pepper if desired. Serve.
NOTE: Lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves sometimes require a trip to an Asian market or specialty store. Buy extra and freeze! They are great for adding to curries and soups.
CORE PLAN OPTION: Serve over cooked brown rice
IN A HURRY OPTION: Use 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Poach with the water and other ingredients for about 10-15 minutes. Turn off heat, cover and let cook the rest of the way. When chicken is cooked through, shred it into 1-2 inch pieces.