2 pounds (900 g) chicken thighs on the bone
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped shallots
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped garlic
2 tablespoons dark or white sugar
2 teaspoons five-spice powder (see below)
2 tablespoons mirin (see below) or dry sherry
1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine (see below) or dry sherry
2 tablespoons fish sauce (see below) or light soy sauce (see
1 teaspoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon freshly ground five-pepper mixture (see below)
or black pepper
Blot the chicken thighs dry with paper towels.
In a food processor, combine the marinade ingredients and blend
them to a puree.
In a large bowl, combine the chicken with the marinade and mix
well. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
When you are ready to barbecue the chicken, remove the chicken
from the refrigerator and leave at room temperature for 40 minutes.
Preheat the gas grill to high or make a charcoal fire in the
barbecue. When the gas grill is very hot or the charcoal is ash-white,
grill the chicken thighs for 10 minutes on each side or until
they are cooked.
Place on a warm platter and serve immediately.
Five-spice Powder is a mixture of star anise, Szechwan
peppercorns, fennel seeds, cloves and cinnamon. It is becoming
a staple in the spice section of supermarkets and Chinese grocers
always keep it in stock. It keeps indefinitely in a well-sealed
Mirin is a heavy, sweet
Japanese rice wine with a light, syrupy texture. There is no
fully satisfactory substitute for this item, but dry sherry can
be used as an alternative. Many Chinese or Asian supermarkets
or Japanese specialty food store will stock it and one bottle
will last quite a long time and is well worth the search
Shaoxing Rice Wine is made from glutinous rice, yeast and spring water.
It is readily available in Chinese grocers and in some supermarkets.
Do not confuse this with sake, which is Japanese version of rice
Fish Sauce is a thin brown sauce made from fermented,
salted fresh fish. Cooking with it greatly diminishes the strong
flavor and saltiness. The sauce simply adds a special richness
and quality to dishes.
Light Soy Sauce is light
in color, but it is full of flavor and is the better one to use
for cooking. It is saltier than dark soy sauce and is known in
Chinese grocers as Superior Soy.
Five-pepper Mixture or
five-peppercorn mixture is a fragrant aromatic mixture of whole
black, white, pink and green peppercorns, and allspice berries.
Available in supermarkets, this mix, freshly ground, gives food
a wonderful tasty touch. It is popular with fusion cooks and
chefs because it bestows an added dimension to recipes.
Wine Recommendations by Wine.Com:
1998 Easton Zinfandel, Amador County
1998 Dom. de Grangeneuve "Cuvee Speciale," Coteaux-du-Tricastin,
Cookbook available in August 2000.
Call 1-800-308-4286 for more information.