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Fast Food At It's Best ~ Cantonese Style Clay Pot Chicken with Kale

Some evenings nothing sounds better than a one dish meal that can be put together in about 30 minutes and still be called heartwarming.

On such evenings, nothing hits the spot like 'Claypot' .

Clay pot cooking which is hugely popular in Asian cuisine, involves cooking a selection of meat, vegetables and sauces in a clay pot. The clay pot is  soaked in water so it releases steam during the cooking process.

Such pots are easily purchased at the Asian store for $10-15 depending on the size. The meat remains moist and tender and is cooked in its own juices. If you don't have a clay pot, feel free to use a dutch oven, clay brazier or in a pinch, heavy bottomed saute pan with a tight lid.

Having lived in Singapore for many years, we yearn for authentic Asian food to which we are addicted I adore just about every clay pot creation there is - including those with tripe!

This here devoid of exotic ingredients is still wonderful in its flavor and depth.

Using chicken thighs (boneless and skinless) is a must for moist meat and I have replaced the more traditional leafy Choy sum with kale. After all, can we have enough kale in our diet? Go antioxidants, vitamins and cardio-vascular health!

Couple of things to note before you set off, this dish will not keep well and the kale will discolor and turn limp if not served immediately off the stove. So be sure to have your steamed rice ready to serve before beginning on the clay pot.

Important tips for using your Clay Pot for the first time: When you first purchase your unglazed or partially glazed clay pot from the Asian store, it is very important to immerse it completely in water for 24 hours before using. This is to seal its pores otherwise the clay pot will adsorb all the oil and water throughout the cooking process and also runs the risk of cracking under heat.



Recipe for

Gather the ingredients,

10 qty boneless, skinless chicken thighs,

1" knob fresh ginger root,

7 garlic cloves - peeled,

2 shallots or 1 large yellow onion,

1 large bunch kale,

3 tbs vegetable oil

Sauce: 3 tbs dark soy sauce,

2-3 tsp sriracha hot chilli sauce,

1/2 tsp ground black pepper, 1/2 tbs + 1 tsp sugar,

2 tbs water,

1/2 tbs cornstarch


Chicken- Cut into 1-1/2" pieces and dry on kitchen paper towels. Remove any excess fat.

Kale - Wash the greens and discard the tough stems. Tear the leaves into large 2"large pieces.

Garlic - Crush & chop the garlic cloves.

Ginger - Wash and cut into thin slices. No need to peel the ginger.

Shallots or onion- Peel and discard skin. if using shallots, finely slice into cross-sections. If using onion, dice into 1/2" pieces.

Sauce - In a small bowl, add the ingredients and whisk to combine. Set aside.


Heat the oil  in the clay pot or a heavy bottom pan on high heat until fuming.

Add the shallots, garlic and ginger and saute for 2-3 until the shallots have softened.

Add the chicken and saute for 5-7 minutes until no longer pink and the chicken has begun to lightly brown.

Mound the kale on top of the chicken and place the lid on it for about 2 minutes.

Remove the lid, add the sauce and stir-fry for about 5 minutes until most of the juices have evaporated and a thick sauce remains.

Taste and adjust seasonings.

Serve immediately with steamed rice.




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