Friday, April 22, 2011

Chicken Thohk

Well, I finally recovered from the horrible strep thoat that plagued me for over a week... and the most horrible thing was that I can't eat because it just hurt too much to swallow... (you know I am really sick when I can't eat... coz there are only very few things in this world that would stop me from eating... I ate when I got my wisdom tooth pulled!) I made chicken soup when I finally felt better but I thought - what a waste to throw away the leftover chicken!!  But it's so bland to eat it alone... thank goodness for the chicken thohk my mom used to make...

based on my very limited Burmese vocabulary, "thohk" is simply the Burmese word for "mix"...  I grew up eating Burmese food... mohinga, ohn-no klao swe, lehpat thohk, curry, etc. - just to name a few of my favorites!  it's definitely an acquired taste but I have grown to love it... my impression of Burmese food is that it's cheap, delicious, but takes a lot time (and effort to make).  Some dishes are easier than the others and to be honest, I am really not good at making them... but I do crave for them from time to time... people may think what do Burmese people eat, it is such a poor country... but let me tell you... the country maybe poor but their food is not... maybe next year, I can go and indulge my taste buds :)


1 deboned, shredded meat from a cooked cornish game hen (you can substitute with shrimp)
1 cucumber or 2 small pickles, finely shredded
1 cup cilantro, coarsely chopped
1/2 purple onion, thinly sliced
2 tbsp fried chopped garlic
2 tbsp fried chopped shallots
1 tbsp raw soy powder (豆粉)
1/2 lime
fish sauce, salt, pepper, MSG to taste

(optional) red peppers flakes, diced thai peppers, tarmarind sauce, and cooked bean sprouts


1.  Heat 1 tbsp oil in the wok over high heat, add the shredded chicken, salt, pepper, MSG and combine (the chicken is bland since I used it to make soup).  Reduce heat, add the soy powder, and toss.
2.  If you don't like the taste of raw onions, toss the onions in the wok and cook till transculent
3.  Turn off heat and toss in the remaining vegetables, garlic / shallots.  Add fish sauce and more salt and pepper to taste.  If desired, you can also add red peppers flakes / diced thai peppers / tarmarind sauce / cooked bean sprouts.
4.  Squeeze the juice from a lime to #3 just before serving.  Best served over rice.

The key to good Burmese cooking (if you ask my mom) is taste as you season, which I agree completely, and mixing everything by hand... I have to say, there is the time and occasion where I find hand mixing fun... (and it does taste better...) I just didn't do it this time... LOL

Ya... prep work can be a nightmare over this one... but I finally found some short cuts :)  Instead of chopping and frying my own garlic and shallots, I found this!  Makes life so much easier!  I actually bought this in Taiwan but I am sure you can find it in an asian grocery store :)


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