I don’t remember exactly when I started to eat kangkong (water spinach or swamp cabbage) but I’ve learned to love it as life went on such that if you ask me now to name a green leafy vegetable, for sure, it is the first vegetable I’ll mention. I love it steamed, or in sinigang, or cooked adobo-style, or coated with some batter and made into crispy kangkong. But most definitely, I love kangkong in oyster sauce. In fact, I already posted a recipe for it about four months ago.
They say that kangkong is a good source of lutein and pro-Vitamin A. Also, it has a significant amount of calcium and iron. It can also help lower blood pressure so it’s good for people who are hypertensive. Best of all, this wonder leaf brings all these benefits but at a really really cheap price.
Last Thursday, I cooked kangkong and chicken with oyster sauce. It’s a really healthy dish that doesn’t compromise a wonderful combination of flavors 🙂
- 2 tbsp. light canola oil
- 1 tbsp. chopped garlic
- 1/4 kilo of chicken breast fillets, cut into bite-size chunks
- a bundle of kangkong (water spinach or swamp cabbage), cleaned
- 4 tbsp. oyster sauce, divided in two parts
- 1 tbsp. vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
- sugar (optional)
First, marinate the chicken in 2 tbsp. oyster sauce for at least 20 minutes.
Next, heat up oil in a pan and saute garlic. Add in the chicken and its marinade and cook the chicken until tender. Kangkong comes in next.
By the way, while I love kangkong, I do realize where it’s from… right, swamps. I’m not sure if the swamp is clean enough to make my kangkong clean. Therefore, it has always been my style to use only the “cleaner” portions of the vegetable, i.e., the leaves and the little stalks under the leaves. Just those. Also, when I cook kangkong, I cook until the leaves are wilted so that the germs will die 😛 There’s no definite science behind it and most of you will probably argue that the vitamins will be lost if I cook it too long but believe me, that’s the only way I’d eat my kangkong. It gives me peace of mind that what I’m eating has been free from all the impurities of the swamp 😀 Besides, kangkong is really like that when cooked, it wilts fast.
Back to the recipe. After adding kangkong, pour in the other half of the oyster sauce and vinegar and cover for at least 2 minutes or until the kangkong leaves are cooked.
Just season with salt and pepper, and if you like it sweet, 1 tbsp. of brown sugar won’t hurt.
And that’s it. You’re done! What I really love about this dish is the marriage of sweet, sour, and salty. The whole dish is so flavorful yet very healthy to boot.
If you can’t find oyster sauce in your pantry, you can substitute it with:
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar (brown is preferred)
- a pinch of ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon of cornstarch dissolved in a tablespoon of water
Hope you enjoyed my recipe as much as I enjoyed making the dish 🙂