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Dinner Tonight! | LEARNING TO COOK / MARION CUNNINGHAM

Fresh Ginger Bird

March 29, 2000|MARION CUNNINGHAM

This is a simple Cantonese-style chicken dish, full of good flavor. I learned it many years ago in the kitchen of Rose Chang, a fine cooking teacher who lived in San Francisco's Chinatown and taught classes on Saturday mornings.

I like to use dark chicken meat in this recipe--thighs or legs--but you may use chicken breasts. They just need a few minutes longer to cook.

Serve it with jasmine steamed rice. To make the rice, add a teaspoon of jasmine tea leaves to the lightly salted cooking water a minute or two before you add the rice. The rice--in combination with the chicken's sweet soy ginger sauce--is terrific.

Cunningham's newest book is "Learning to Cook With Marion Cunningham" (Alfred A. Knopf, 1999).

Chicken With Fresh Ginger

Active Work Time: 15 minutes * Total Preparation Time: 35 minutes

The sauce to serve with the chicken is optional.

1 (4-inch) piece ginger root, unpeeled

4 green onions

1/3 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup dry Sherry

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup peanut oil or vegetable oil

1 (3- to 3 1/2-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces

* Trim any parts of ginger that are not firm and smooth. Slice into 1/4-inch thick pieces. Set aside. Trim root ends of green onions. Leave about 2 inches of green parts and cut white and green parts into thin slices. Set aside.

* Combine soy sauce, Sherry and sugar in bowl. Set aside.

* Heat peanut oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Hold palm of your hand 1 inch above oil; if you can feel heat, oil is ready. Add chicken and ginger pieces, spreading in single layer. Use a fork to move pieces occasionally so they don't stick to bottom of skillet. Brown chicken and ginger pieces, about 5 minutes each side.

* Reduce heat to medium-low and pour sauce evenly over chicken and ginger. Cover and cook until no pink remains around chicken bone (test for doneness by cutting a slit to the bone), 8 to 10 minutes.

* Remove chicken pieces and arrange on platter, sprinkled with green onions. Strain sauce and skim fat. Return sauce to skillet. Cook over medium heat, reducing by one-fourth, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with chicken, if desired. Accompany with jasmine rice.

4 servings. Each serving, without rice: 698 calories; 1,475 mg sodium; 145 mg cholesterol; 48 grams fat; 19 grams carbohydrates; 38 grams protein; 0.06 gram fiber.

*

Plate, silverware and napkin from Williams-Sonoma stores.

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