Recipe by NcMysteryShopper
Chef Vongerichten sells 60 orders a day of this supermoist Hong Kong-style chicken. One of the reasons it's so good is that the chicken is fried whole in a wok, yet it doesn't taste remotely oily. The other reason is that the chicken is rubbed with aromatic five-spice powder and salt four hours before being basted with a vinegar and brown sugar syrup, then marinated overnight; plan accordingly. MAKE AHEAD: The spiced salt can be made up to 2 weeks ahead. Wine: A fruity, peppery red from France's southern Rhône Valley will complement the chicken and spicy seasoning here. Consider a Grenache-dominated Gigondas, such as the 1999 Domaine du Gour de Chaulé or the 2000 Domaine Les Paillères.
Top Review by ChloeBaby
The BEST chicken ever. EVER. This recipe is at the top of my family's favourites now! I found this recipe over the summer, and I've made it about 5 times now, exactly as written. Try it, you will LOVE this chicken!
- kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon five-spice powder
- 1 chicken bouillon cube (12 grams)
- 1 (3 1/2 lb) chicken
- 2 cups distilled white vinegar
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon szechwan pepper
- 3 1⁄4 cups vegetable oil
- 8 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
Directions See How It's Made
- Set a fine sieve over a small bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of kosher salt, the five-spice powder and bouillon cube and rub them through the sieve. Set the chicken on a platter. Rub the spice blend all over the chicken inside and out and refrigerate it for 4 hours.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the vinegar with the water, brown sugar and baking powder and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Transfer the syrup to a large bowl and let cool to room temperature. Stand the chicken in the syrup and ladle the syrup over it several times. Transfer the chicken to a rack set over a plate and refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature before cooking.
- Pat the chicken dry inside and out with paper towels. In a large wok, heat 3 cups of the oil to 375° over moderately high heat. Carefully lower the chicken into the hot oil, breast side up, and cook until deeply browned on the bottom, about 20 minutes. Insert a large fork into the cavity and carefully transfer the chicken to a plate. Turn the chicken over and lower it into the hot oil, breast side down. Fry the chicken until deeply browned and cooked through, about 20 minutes longer.
- Meanwhile, in a small skillet, toast the Szechwan peppercorns over moderate heat until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a spice grinder and let cool. Add 3 tablespoons of kosher salt and grind to a fine powder.
- Heat the remaining 1/4 cup of oil in a small skillet. Add the garlic and cook over low heat until golden, about 4 minutes. Transfer the garlic and oil to a small bowl.
- Transfer the chicken to a carving board, breast side up, and let rest for 10 minutes. Carve and arrange the pieces on a platter. Scatter the garlic and oil all over the chicken and serve with the spiced salt.