Hawaiian Ginger Chicken Stew. Delicious!!!

by Curt Donohue on April 3, 2009

Even though this recipe claims to be Hawaiian, it reminds me of a comforting Vietnamese soup. Curt and I both love the healthy fresh tastes of a good Vietnamese broth based meal.  Unfortunately, we live in a small town that doesn’t offer any Vietnamese cooking.  Also, many stews and soups that claim to be healthy are loaded with sodium, and as a woman whose mother is on a strict, low sodium diet, I am constantly aware of sodium content in foods.

When I came across this recipe, I was skeptical at first, so I made it and served it to Curt and waited to see what he thought before trying it myself.  My unknowing victim was distracted when I handed him the bowl and dug right in.  Lo and behold, he absolutely loved it!  And when I tasted it, I loved it too. 

I love how healthy this soup is! You have all of the wonderful benefits that ginger and garlic provide, you serve it on brown rice and have the option of using Swiss Chard or Winter Greens, both of which are nutrition superstars.  Go ahead and see for you’re yourself the health benefits of swiss chard (warning: you may be reading for a while!):

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=16_

This flavorful, comforting stew has the best of all worlds in my book: it is easy to make, it’s healthy, it attempts to substitute low-sodium ingredients and most of all it tastes incredible!

http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/hawaiian_ginger_chicken_stew.html

There is a tip on using Sherry below the recipe, and I have a few more tips and clarifications of my own:

• The recipe says simply to use a Dutch oven.  I have found that a medium sized 3QT Dutch oven is sufficient.

• The recipe also says “1 piece(s) (2-inch) fresh ginger”.  I believe this translates into: One 2 inch piece of ginger (peeled and cut into matchsticks or minced).  I’m not sure how thick this 2 inch piece of ginger is supposed to be, I’ve tried it with thin ginger and thick ginger and it seems to work either way.

• O.K. so when I first made this recipe, I got slightly confused on what cutting chicken tenders into 1 inch pieces meant – I am always in a rush, so I translated “pieces” into “slices” – trust me you will be much happier if you don’t make the same mistake that I did.  Also, when I cut chicken or any meat I cut it on a non-porous cutting board which is separate from the cutting board I use for my other ingredients.

• When I went to the store, I had no idea what I was going to find available ( I went in February and again, I live in a small town).  Well I found chard – I have no clue about preparing chard for cooking, so I went on-line and found a very quick and helpful little video on Expert Village to show me what to do:

http://www.expertvillage.com/video/33148_cooking-techniques-veg-swisschardgreen2-pfc.htm 
 
• There is also a video on how to prepare mustard greens:

http://www.expertvillage.com/video/33369_cooking-techniques-veg-mustardgreens2-pfc.htm

 
The lowest sodium soy sauce that I could find in our local city market was the Kroger brand Lite Soy Sauce which had 530mg per Tbsp.  The lowest sodium chicken broth we found was Pacific organic low sodium chicken broth at 70mg of sodium.  If you find brands that beat these, would love to hear about them!

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