Wednesday, 1 March 2006

Steam Herbal Chicken

We love to cook this Steamed Herbal Chicken at least once or twice every fortnightly either half portion of chicken, chicken wings or chicken drumsticks depending what we prefer on that week. If you have some ready Chinese Herbs at home, it is actually better to use that rather than getting premixed spices from supermarkets.

There are many different methods in preparing this dish where some might prefer stronger herbal taste or lighter. My method here might be different from your so this is just for reference and sharing you can always add or remove ingredients which is not accessible on your end.


Ingredients: (serves 2)
Half Chicken/5 Chicken Wings/4 Drumsticks
4 Red Dates(红枣)
2 Black Dates, optional(黑枣)
1 Teaspoon Of Gou Ji Zi(杞子)
3-4 Slices of Dang Gu(当归)
1 - 2 Stalks Of Dang Sheng(当参), cut into 1" long
2 Slices Of Huai Shan(淮山)
1 Slice Of Bei Qi
A few Slices Of Yu Zhu(玉竹)

Sauce:
1 Teaspoon Of Sesame Oil
1 Teaspoon Of Dark Soy Sauce
150ml Water/Rice Wine
1.5 Tablespoon Of Oyster Sauce

Methods:
1. Put all the herbs in a plate or bowl then rinse with water and drain well. Set aside.
2. Rinse and pat dry the chicken with kitchen paper towel, rub it evenly with 1 teaspoon each of salt and grated ginger juice.
3. Get ready a sheet of aluminum foil and place it on top of a steaming plate, arrange some of the herbs on it, top with the chicken and remaining herbs.
4. Mix all the sauce ingredients then pour it over the chicken. (If using those traditional rice wine then no need to include the oyster sauce).
5. Wrap up the chicken nicely in a parcel, place it on plate and steam in the steamer for 20 minutes, removed, open the parcel and turn the chicken pieces so that it will coat with the sauce then re-wrapped and steam for a further 15 - 20 minutes until chicken is cooked and tender.

Notes:
- If you are using those small spring chicken, then you might need to increase the amount of herbs by twice/triple as well as the sauce so that the chicken will be absorbing the sauce from those herbs.

- Using traditional yellow rice wine to make the dish gives it a much sweeter and delicious end result.

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