on September 17, 2012 at 3:36 pm
Posted In: chicken
If you love pork bologna, you must love chicken bologna (cha lua ga or gio lua ga) as well.
It is good news for someone who cannot eat pork because this chicken bologna is as good as the pork one. Many people think it is healthier.
The best part for someone who lives in America is that chicken is cheap and can be found everywhere.
In my recipes I prefer to use chicken thigh, the most flavorful part of the chicken. If you use chicken breast or a combination of chicken breast and thigh, it is best you add some oil to prevent dryness. I use 1 tablespoon of canola oil (considered healthy oil) to infuse shallot and onion to enhance flavors.
The chicken meat is somewhat bland, moreover, my meat comes from my local ordinary supermarket, so I need a little help from sugar. I grind my own meat. You can instead buy ground meat. It is preferable to use white pepper to maintain a delicate appearance, while black pepper is fine if you do not serve them to Vietnamese diners.
You can check pork bologna recipe by clicking here.
1½ lb/700g chicken thigh, cleaned and cut into chunks
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 tablespoon fish sauce
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoon cornstarch (potato starch or tapioca starch)
¼ cup plus 1-2 tablespoons ice cold water
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 shallot, chopped
¼ medium onion, chopped
3 large banana leaves of about 8 inches
3 smaller banana leaves of about 6 inches
Twine for tying
Heat the pan or skillet over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Pour in oil and wait until hot. Add shallot and cook for 1’ until fragrant, add onion and cook for 5’, making sure they do not get brown color. If it has color the final product does not look white, and that is the color you want.
Grind the meat 2 times in batches, adding all ingredients, including shallot and onion mixture. Remove from the food processor and knead the meat for 5’. Place the paste in a plastic bag and keep in a freezer for at least 2 hours. The paste is now returned to the food processor and ground in batches for few more minutes, adding 1-2 tablespoons of ice cold water.
Place the larger piece of banana leaf on the flat surface horizontally and the smaller one on top vertically. Put the paste across the top layer and in the center. Lift both ends of the leaves together (like you would when rolling rice rolls “banh tet” and make a grease and fold it into a cylinder. Cut off the extra leaves both side ends, leaving about 2 inches to make a neat square fold. Place the roll on top of a plastic wrap. Roll the plastic to make the very round and even roll. The plastic wrap does a good job here. Tie with twine or not, it is your choice. The twine does make it look like a Vietnamese roll, without distorting the shape. I used 2 pieces of plastic wrap to make sure no leak.
Traditionally, the rolls were boiled in water. If you do so wrap the leaves and tie very tightly to avoid the water slipping through to ruin the rolls. I find steaming (not in direct water) prevents this problem.
Bring a steamer to a rolling boil. Place the rolls in the steamer. The steam time varies depending on how thick the roll is. I steamed this 1½ lb roll for 45’.
Grind chicken thigh into smooth paste
Place the paste in a plastic bag to go into the freezer
Place the paste in the center
Cut off extra leaves from both ends