Thursday, February 23, 2012

Chee pow kai Paper-wrapped chicken

Chee pow kai Paper-wrapped chicken
Makes 23–30 parcels
1½in (3.5cm) piece of fresh ginger, peeled
1 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine
1 tsp spiced salt (see below)
½ tsp sugar
5 star anise, broken into pieces
vegetable oil for deep-frying
6 chicken breast halves (1½–3lb total)
fresh cilantro leaves (optional)
fresh chili sauce (optional)
freshly ground black pepper
For the spiced salt
2 tbsp salt
1 tsp five-spice powder
To make the spiced salt, mix together the salt and five-spice powder. Dryroastin a clean frying pan over low heat for 3–4 minutes until fragrant, stirring the mixture to prevent burning. Let cool. This keeps indefinitely when stored
airtight at room temperature.Using a pestle and mortar, crush the ginger to a coarse pulp. Take the pulp in your hand and squeeze all the juice from the ginger into a bowl.
(Alternatively, finely chop the ginger, then mash on a board using the back of
a knife until you have a coarse pulp.) Discard the squeezed pulp.
Mix the juice with the soy sauce, rice wine, 1 tsp spiced salt, sugar, star
anise, and 1 tbsp oil. Lay the chicken breasts in a flat glass or ceramic
dish. Pour the marinade over the top and season with black pepper. Marinate
the chicken in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Cut parchment paper into 30 rectangles measuring about 12 x 6in
(30 x 15cm) each. Lightly oil each piece of paper. Cut each chicken breast
into 5 even-sized pieces, and place a piece of chicken on each piece of paper
with a little piece of star anise picked from the marinade. Tightly wrap up the
chicken like a small parcel, using toothpicks to secure the edges.
Heat the oil in a heavy pan over medium-high heat for deep-frying. Fry
the chicken parcels in batches for 3–4 minutes or until the paper browns.
Drain well on paper towels and serve, allowing your guests to unwrap the parcels
for themselves. Garnish with lots of fresh cilantro and chili sauce (if using).

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