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Steamed Chicken with Scallions and Ginger
© Kate N.G. Sommers

Steamed Chicken with Scallions and Ginger

  • ACTIVE: 30 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME: 2 HRS plus 24 hr marinating

Andrew Zimmern’s Kitchen Adventures

This is the dish to make when you get a fresh, natural chicken at the farmers’ market and you really want to show off its insane flavor. I use heritage chicken breeds and the results are stellar. It’s a take on the classic Malay-style Hainanese Chicken Rice dish, but it’s served a little differently. Frequently, I make the rice that accompanies this meal but most often it’s too much trouble on a school night at home, so I serve this with plain streamed sticky rice and a nice green vegetable, and there are never any leftovers. Don’t be fooled: This recipe is simple, but the flavors are complex. —Andrew Zimmern


  1. Two 4-pound chickens
  2. 6 cups sake
  3. 1 cup soy sauce
  4. 1 cup mirin
  5. 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  6. 1/2 cup chopped peeled fresh ginger plus 12 thin slices of fresh ginger
  7. 3 garlic cloves, halved
  8. 1 onion, chopped

dipping sauce

  1. 1/3 cup sake
  2. 1/4 cup soy sauce
  3. 3 tablespoons Chinese black vinegar
  4. 2 tablespoons sugar
  5. 3 thin slices of garlic
  6. 2 scallions, minced (3 tablespoons)
  7. 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  8. Hot sesame oil
  1. PREPARE THE CHICKENS Put each chicken in a large resealable plastic bag. In a large measuring cup or bowl, whisk 4 cups of the sake with the soy sauce, mirin, vinegar, chopped ginger and garlic. Divide the marinade between the two bags; press out the air and seal the bags. Turn to coat the chickens thoroughly. Refrigerate the chickens for 24 hours.
  2. MEANWHILE, MAKE THE DIPPING SAUCE In a medium bowl, combine the sake, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, garlic, scallions and ginger. Season with the hot sesame oil.
  3. Set a steamer rack inside a pot large enough to hold the chickens. Add 6 cups of water to the pot along with the sliced ginger, chopped onion and remaining 2 cups of sake. Bring to a boil. Carefully set the chickens on the rack, cover and steam until cooked through, 60 to 70 minutes. Transfer the chickens to a cutting board or a platter and let rest for 20 minutes.
  4. Carve each chicken into 8 pieces and serve with the dipping sauce.