by Ariel J.
During the 80’s and 90’s, there was a popular Chinese restaurant in Monumento, Caloocan (Philippines), called Pines Restaurant.
It was a small restaurant, but the ambiance takes you to that feeling like you are in Binondo, Chinatown. The food were great and very affordable.
There was this one dish that was really very popular at this restaurant back then, the “Hongkong Chicken”.
A chicken dish with thick sauce, crisp vegetables, and 'Tengang Daga' mushrooms.
At that time Hongkong chicken was my comfort food, because of the savory taste of chicken, the aroma of star anise & ginger, the sweetness of the sauce and the crunchiness of vegetables.
In the year 2000, we moved to Mandaluyong City, and that meant missing this dish for a while.
So one time, I visited a friend somewhere in Caloocan City, and thought of stopping by the Pines restaurant, but felt a bit disappointed when I found out that the restaurant was no longer around.
That is when I tried to remake the taste of famous Hongkong chicken of Pines just to satisfy my cravings.
I tried several attempts, until one day I knew it was almost like it.
Now, I could say that it is one of my specialty and personal favorites. I even won a cooking contest for this dish.
This is the most requested dish by my family and friends, and I would also love to share my own 'Hongkong chicken ala Pines' to you.
• 1 Whole Chicken
• 3 tbsp. Soy Sauce
• 1 Onion
• 5 cloves Garlic
• 2 thumbsize Ginger
• 3 pieces Star Anise
For the sauce:
• 3 cloves Garlic
• 1 Onion
• 1 thumb size Ginger
• 3 Star Anise
• 2 tbsp. Oyster Sauce
• 3 cups liquid from chicken
• 100 grams Sitsaro
• 2 pieces Carrots (flowerette)
• 1/2 Pechay Baguio
• 3 tablespoon Brown Sugar
• oil for frying
• 1 tbsp cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water
• 1 pack of Tengang Daga Mushroom
1. Boil the whole chicken in soy sauce, onion, garlic, ginger, star anise & enough water to the chicken. Set aside.
2. Fry the whole chicken in oil. Set aside.
3. Saute onion, garlic, ginger and star anise in oil.
4. Add oyster sauce, carrots and the tengang daga mushroom.
5. Add the liquid from the boiled chicken. Let it simmer.
6. Add sugar and sitsaro.
7. Add the pechay baguio
8. Thicken the sauce with the cornstarch and water slurry.
9. Chop the chicken in serving sizes and arrange in a platter. Top it with vegetables and the sauce.
10. Serve with steamed rice.