Yield: 8 servings
|8||Chicken fryer drumsticks|
|Cornstarch for dredging|
|3 cups||Oil for deep-frying|
|1 cup||Dried chestnuts|
|1||Five-spice bouquet (OR|
|1 tablespoon||Five-spice powder)|
|4 cups||Cold water|
|½ cup||Dark soy sauce|
|½ cup||Rock sugar|
|½ cup||Medium sherry|
This dish is a good example of the whole being greater than the parts.
Preparation:At least 12 hours before cooking this dish, rinse several times then soak dried chestnuts. After soaking, remove pieces of skin wedged in nutmeat.
Deep-frying: In wok or suitable pan, slowly heat deep-frying oil; oil is ready when bubbles quickly form around chopstick held vertically in oil. Meanwhile, dredge drumsticks in cornstarch; shake off excess starch. Deep fry drumsticks 2 at a time until brown, about 5 minutes.
Remove from oil; drain.
Red-cooking: Pour water in sandy pot or comparable casserole dish; add 5-spice bouquet, soy sauce, sherry & salt (5-spice powder can be substituted, though the final flavor will be less distinctive). Slowly bring to boil, reduce heat, cover pot & simmer 15 minutes. Remove cover; discard bouquet; add salt & rock sugar; dissolve rock sugar.
You can stop here until near serving time.
About 30 minutes before serving time, add drumsticks & soaked chest- nuts to hot red-cooked sauce. Simmer in covered pot for 15 minutes; remove cover; simmer for another 15 minutes. Sauce should have re- duced by about ⅓, and become bright & thick.
To serve, prop drumsticks up around sides of sandy pot; spear chest- nuts with sate sticks or long toothpicks.