I am not really sure what Pongteh means, but basically Ayam Pongteh is chicken, potatoes, mushroom braised in fermented soybean paste. This is a must order dish in any Nyonya restaurant. The flavorful chicken meat that has been infused with the salty bean paste, sweet shallots and garlic goes really well with rice. My good friend Shereen who reside in New Zealand is kind enough to share her family recipe with us. Thanks Shereen.
2 Ib chicken
3 tbsp cooking oil
2 tbsp fermented bean paste (tau cheong)
1 1/2 - 2 cups water (depend on how much gravy you like)
4 medium size potatoes – peel and cut into half or quarter
5 whole Chinese dry shitake mushrooms – soaked in hot water until soft
2 tsp palm sugar or brown sugar – more if you like it sweeter
2 tsp thick black soy sauce
1. Clean, removed skin and cut the chicken into bite size pieces. Pat dry. Put the shallots and garlic in a food processor and ground it into paste.
2. Heat up the oil in a frying pan; add in the ground shallots and garlic. Stir fry until fragrant and lightly brown.
3. Add in the fermented bean paste, stir fry until fragrant. Add in the chicken pieces, continue to stir-fry and until chicken changes to pale color. Put in the water.
4. Bring it up to a boil, turn down the heat, cover and continue to simmer for 10 minutes. Add in the mushroom and potatoes. Continue to simmer for 10 minutes.
5. Add in sugar, black soy sauce. Continue to shimmer until gravy thickens, chicken is cooked and potatoes tender. Check seasoning.
6. Serve with warm rice.
Note: This dish can be kept in the fridge for a few days and it actually tastes better the next day.