Poached chicken – a fantastic discovery!

I love finding out new ways to cook things. Baking , slow-cooking, deep-frying, grilling… and my personal favourite: poaching. I now eat poached eggs every morning at my office canteen, as they not only look beautiful, but also taste delicious and aren’t dripping in oil. I haven’t yet mastered the art of poaching eggs myself, but it is a skill I hope to acquire one day.

Poached eggs… mmmhh

Now that summer seems like it’s here to stay, I am starting to experiment more with my salads. The other day, I made an avocado salad with baked salmon on the side, and I decided to re-use some of those elements, but to add poached chicken on top. The main reason for repetition was because I had another avocado that I needed to use 🙂

My mother always used to poach chicken when she made chicken salad – she would boil it in stock and then let it cool before shredding it and mixing it with mayonnaise, mustard, sesame seeds and various spices (I should ask her for that recipe…!). I remembered this when I decided to poach 2 chicken breasts this week. Instead of using chicken stock though, I decided to experiment a little. The result was delicious…

Serves two people

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • Enough water to generously cover the chicken breasts
  • 3 tsp whole red peppercorns (available in most Asian supermarkets)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp mixed herbs
  • 2 inch piece of ginger, sliced thinly
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
  • 1 tsp chili oil
  • 3 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 bay leaf

This recipe could not be easier: Just put everything except the chicken in a pot and set to boil. Once the water boils, add the chicken, turn down the heat and let simmer for about 7-8 minutes. Then turn the heat off and leave the chicken in the water. When I cooked it, I didn’t leave it for too long, but ideally it should sit for around 1 hour (at least).


Then, remove the chicken and shred or cut it into pieces. I put it on top of a salad made of lettuce and avocado and mixed it all with a mustardy vinaigrette. Before I poured the vinaigrette over though, I added 3 tbsp of the leftover chicken liquid, which made ALL the difference. I also had some fresh olive bread on the side, which fit perfectly!

Happy summer!