On a wire rack in the corner of my kitchen, you'll find dozens of stacked blue-and-white Chinese bowls in almost every size and shape and pattern you've ever seen. (No, I'm not running a store. Yes, I have a little bowl problem.) However, the bowl in these photos is one-of-a-kind in my collection -- it was made for export, and obviously hand-painted, though it isn't precious -- and it happens to be the absolutely perfect size for a rice bowl dinner for one. This slow cooker hoisin chicken, so easy to make with just three ingredients, is a component I like to make ahead and freeze in small portions. Then, when I'm craving a rice bowl, I fire up the rice cooker, and at the end of the cooking time, I toss the chicken and bok choy on top of the rice, close up the cooker, and let them steam together for 15 minutes. It's Chinese take-out at home, and it couldn't be easier.
Slow cooker hoisin chicken, bok choy and sesame brown rice bowl
For the chicken:
10 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
For the rice bowl:
1 cup brown rice, cooked according to package directions
4 cups chopped bok choy
1 tsp white or black sesame seeds, or a mix
Coat the inside of a 3-quart slow cooker with cooking spray.
Trim the chicken, and add it to the slow cooker with the hoisin and rice vinegar. Stir to coat the chicken. Cover and cook on HIGH for 3 hours.
When the chicken is cooked, pour the contents of the slow cooker into a bowl, and use two forks to shred the chicken. (At this point, you can cool the meat and freeze it.)
Meanwhile, during the time the chicken is cooking, cook the rice according to package directions, on the stovetop or in a rice cooker. Brown rice takes a long time, so make sure you start the rice at least 1 hour before the chicken will be done.
Divide the cooked rice into 4 individual bowls.
Cut the bok choy into large chunks, and place in a microwave safe bowl with 1 teaspoon of water. Cover with plastic wrap, and cook for 90 seconds. Divide the steamed bok choy among the rice bowls.
Top each rice bowl with a portion of hoisin chicken, and sprinkle on some sesame seeds. An extra squirt of hoisin sauce is nice, too.
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