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BEGGARS CHICKEN 
1 (3 lb.) whole chicken
3 green onions
1 inch piece green ginger
1 tsp. sugar
3 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. dry sherry
1 tbsp. water
1/4 tsp. five-spice powder
2 tbsp. soy sauce, extra
2 tbsp. oil

CLAY DOUGH:

3 1/4 c. cooking salt
4 c. plain flour
1 1/2 c. water (approximately)

1. To make the dough, place the unsifted flour and salt into the bowl; mix well. Gradually stir in the water. Mix to a firm dough using your hands. A little extra water may be needed. Do not have dough too soft or it will be hard to handle.

2. Place two very large sheets of aluminum foil on the table and brush well with oil. Place the chicken in the middle of the foil. Then place roughly chopped green onions, sugar, peeled and sliced ginger, soy sauce, sherry, water and five-spice powder in a bowl and mix well. Rub chicken all over with extra soy sauce, then rub with 2 tablespoons oil. Rub well into the skin. Pull skin at neck end down under chicken, tuck wing tips under chicken and over neck skin. Carefully pour soy sauce mixture into chicken cavity, holding chicken up slightly so that no sauce runs out. Secure end of chicken with small skewer. Wrap foil around the chicken and secure like a parcel.

3. Roll dough out to a 1/2 inch thickness, so that it will encase the chicken completely. Fold dough over the chicken. Press edges and ends together.

4. Place chicken in lightly oiled baking dish. Smooth out all joints with wet fingers, making sure there are no holes in the pastry. Bake in a 475 degree oven for one hour. Reduce heat to 275 degrees and cook further for three hours. Remove chicken from oven, break open pastry clay with mallet (or hammer) and remove. Lift foil wrapped chicken onto serving plate and carefully remove the foil.

Serves 4.

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