Tea-scented chicken (茶香鸡) is a traditional dish from Hangzhou cuisine. Tender chicken is cooked with assorted spices, yet the flavour is not too strong, but rather refreshing and well-balanced because of the unique ingredient: Hangzhou’s very own Dragon Well green tea (Longjing).
It’s a dish that takes time, but surely you’ll have fun making it!
What you need
- 10g dragon well green tea (longjing)
- 10g dried goji berries
- 3g dried orange peel
- 2g of ginger slices
- 3tbs of soy sauce
- 1tbs of dark soy sauce
- 1tbs of sugar
- 3tbs of rice wine
- a teaspoon of each of the following: fennel, clove, cinnamon bark, sichuan peppers.
- sliced turnip
Don’t let it discourage you when you can’t find dragon well green tea. Try use another green tea that you can buy locally. Make sure not to use tea bags, instead try to find a pure loose leaf green tea.
How to make:
- Place dragon well green tea leaves, dried goji berries, dried orange peel, fennel, clove, cinnamon barks, bay leaves, Sichuan peppercorns in a pot.
- Pour boiling water into the pot (which can fit a whole chicken) over the tea leaves and spices.
- Massage the tender chicken with more than the usual amount of salt.
- Wait until the water cools down, place ginger slices, dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, a little sugar, and some rice wine in the pot. Apart from the tea leaves, rice wine is also a secret ingredient in this marinade!
- Soak the chicken in the marinade and put the pot in the fridge overnight.
- Get the chicken out of the pot. Discard the marinade.
- Spread sliced turnip at the bottom of the pot. It will prevent the chicken from getting burnt. Also it tastes great with the chicken!
- Place the marinated chicken, a pinch of Longjing tea leaves, scallion, ginger slices and a few cloves of garlic on top of the turnip slices in the pot.
- Add boiled water into the pot till it fully immerses the chicken. Wait until the water is boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for two hours.
- Turn off the stove when time’s up. Heat some oil and pour over the chicken.
- Time to enjoy this appetizing dish!
Oolong tea variation
For a stronger tea taste you may also replace green tea with a dark oolong tea, such as da hong pao.