Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Black Chicken Power

Well la DEE da, the New York Times is making it hip to eat black chicken. High time, too, since in all objective terms, the black chicken, an wuji in China, a Silkie elsewhere, is the go-to bird. If you can get past the color barrier you’re in for a treat: complex, delicate meat with way more soul than its poor white factory-farmed relatives. Besides, black chicken has nutritive properties the Chinese have sworn by since Lu Dongbing used it for his immortality pills back in the 9th century. Here are a few easy recipes to convince you.
Black Chicken Soup
1 black chicken, whole, skinned and cut into big chunks
1 teaspoon of salt
50 grams of ginseng roots, chopped
1/8 cup dried Chinese wolf berries (Otherwise known as the Tibetan Gouji Berry  or Lycium chinense)
15 seeded dried Chinese dates (hongzao)
8 cups of water
No doubt you’re wondering where the potatoes and carrots are. This soup is as much medicine as it is sustenance, a must for Chinese women pregnant and post-natal, renowned for restoring yin energy. Call it rejuvenating your kidneys and liver if you don’t believe in such FDA non-sanctioned mumbo jumbo.
Just rub those chicken chunks lightly with salt, then toss the whole shebang in a big pot. Bring to a boil and then simmer for three and a half hours. Voila, over two liters of refined taste sensation, and a tonic even more potent than Mamalah’s kosher version.
Black Chicken Soup, Version 2
Add some papaya and almonds to the first recipe. This will filter toxins from your blood and cleanse the lungs, and add a sweet note that will change what you think goes with chicken.
1 whole black chicken (rinsed, chopped)
1 papaya (peeled, diced)
20 grams of ginseng roots, chopped
40g sweet almonds
2 Chinese dates
5 cups of water
Boil the chicken separately for five minutes this time, then add the other ingredients. After they’re boiling, turn them down to a slow simmer for just two hours. Add salt to taste.
Stir-Fried Black Chicken
Theoretically, black chicken can do anything white can. But it’s a shame to mask its unique flavor with breading or glaze, and black chicken is softer, with less fat.
1 whole black chicken cut into small pieces
2 spoonfuls of light soy sauce
2 spoonfuls of sweet black soy sauce
2 cloves of minced garlic
A thumb-sized piece of ginger, minced
Four tablespoons of light oil
First sauté the ginger until golden brown, then add the chicken and garlic . Once the chicken is changing color, add the soy sauce and stir fry for another eight to ten minutes. Just remember moistness is a virtue, and dryness a sin.

Garlic, Black Pepper and Blue Cheese Chicken Wings

While I am a HUGE fan of Buffalo Wings, I’ve found that over time my taste for wings has evolved to favor sauces a little more multi-dimensional (and not scorchingly hot) in nature. The base for this sauce is a slight twist on Ming Tsai’s Black Pepper-Garlic Sauce (Simply Ming: Easy Techniques for East-Meets-West Meals) , which he serves with a fabulous lobster dish at his restaurant “Blue Ginger”. Ever since I tried that amazing meal, I’ve been twisting his sauce to and fro to satisfy the requirements of a number of different culinary whims.
I modify it to use as a wing sauce by adding an herbal note with fresh thyme, and of course, some blue cheese! The nam pla and blue cheese add a salty tang, the garlic, a pungent bite, the black pepper a mellow, slow burn, and the butter smooths it all just enough to let you enjoy the bold flavors without forcing you to reach for a fire extinguisher.  We had these for dinner the other night with a fresh green salad and some crusty bread, but they'd be great as part of a game day spread as you root for your favorite team this football season.
2 pounds chicken wings, cut at the joint, tips removed and reserved for another purpose.
1 tablespoon canola oil 
25 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 cup scallions, white and green parts only, finely chopped
1 tablespoon (heaping) coarsley-ground black pepper
2 cups dry white wine
2 cups low-sodium canned chicken broth
3 tablespoons fish sauce (nam pla)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) salted butter, cut into 1-tablespoon pieces
Juice of 1 lemon
3/4 cups crumbled blue cheese
2 teaspoons finely minced fresh thyme
canola or corn oil for frying

Heat large sauté pan over high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the garlic and cook until starting to soften, about 2 minutes. Add the scallions and black pepper, and stir. Add the wine, stock, fish sauce, and lemon juice and cook until the liquid is reduced by half, about 8-10 minutes.
Remove from the heat, and let cool about 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend on high speed to purée. With the blender running, add the butter one piece at a time to form a creamy sauce.
Take 1 cup of the garlic pepper sauce and place it in a bowl. Whisk in the blue cheese and minced thyme, taste for seasoning and add salt if desired, set aside. Reserve the rest of the sauce, refrigerated for a later use.
Preheat oven to 350 ℉
Place the chicken wings on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for 40 minutes.
In large sauce pot or fryer, heat 3-inches of the canola or corn oil, or enough to prevent wings from touching the bottom of the pan, to 375 ℉. Add the baked chicken wings to the oil and cook for about 4-5 minutes, or until crispy and golden brown. Remove the chicken wings from the oil and drain on paper towels.
Add the wings to the bowl of sauce and toss well to coat. Dump the whole mess onto a platter, or better yet, gather around the bowl and dig in!

Recipe: Apple and Country Ham Risotto Black Chicken Updates has all the black chicken story from a ton of corner of the world wide web – Come around often to keep up to date on black chicken related news headlines as as it’s happening.
Looking for a black chicken related headline that is not anywhere to be found? Send us a message! and we’ll seek it for you!
black chicken :
Recipe: Apple and Country Ham Risotto
Apples, hard cider and country ham star in this risotto recipe.
Read more on Seattle Times

Cooking at Home: Mary Claire White
Mary Claire White sums up her cooking in three words: healthy, fresh and inexpensive. But she didn’t always cook that way.
Read more on Memphis Commercial Appeal

Pet expert visits for McKamey fundraiser Paws Around the World
Victoria Stilwell, host of Animal Planet’s popular show “It’s Me or the Dog,” will be in Chattanooga on Friday evening as the guest speaker at McKamey Animal Care and Adoption Center’s new fundraiser, Paws Around the World.
Read more on Chattanooga Times Free Press

black chicken from The Twitterverse:
Google Blog Search Results: 585,218 results for black chicken – showing 1 through 5

Black Chicken Must See | The meat can be either chicke…

The Silky Chicken or Black Chicken

this is a rare bird indeed!
well, on my hunt for the "out-of-the-ordinary" i came across this lovely(?) looking creature...YIKES! can i just say YIKES again.  i must say.......this one finally stumped me. you might know i'm pretty adventurous with foods.  i'm no Andrew Zimmer, but i like to go for the strange stuff.  i find a good challenge and give it a go...this one got me.  i still ask myself why?'s just a chicken, right?...well...not so much.
#1...always remember to read the fine print on the package..."head and feet intact" AND it has FIVE TOES instead of four!. i missed that part. as the thing thawed and started to unfold, and i DO mean unfold...this small little wrapped up bird was over 2 feet stretched out. AND IT"S BLUE !!!!! can imagine what i was thinking. i can handle alot of things, but this one was definitely high on the scale of "what the heck am i gonna do with this?" and "what was i thinking?" BUT, curiosity still had the best of me.
#2...investigate and research what your strange product is all about. i found a few sites with recipes for soup...i thought great! a new twist on an old favorite, chicken soup. not so much. as i read further, after purchase, i found that the black chicken is most used for Chinese medicinal purposes...mainly for sick people, pregnant women or just after giving birth. it's a very lean bird, does not necessarily produce a tasty unforgettable unctuous broth...and i don't really fall into one of the needy categories.
#3...keep your game face on. anyone walking in on you dismantling this black (blue) bird will think you are in need of some help...serious help...i don't mean with the soup...
so what do i do ?...i decided to wing it, of course...(again, sorry about the bad pun).
the easiest recipe i found was HERE at  eating club Vancouver by fellow bloggers ts & js.  they call it Mama's Silkie Chicken or "Dyong Kwe".  this recipe seemed easiest to tackle due to the short list of ingredients.  please visit their site for an easy and quick step by step (with photos) to see how Mama does it.
i didn't have a few of the ingredients so i just went with the recipe i use for Duck Soup found HERE.  it sounded pretty similar with Asian style flavors and such.  i thought if the flavors were basic and normal i might be able to salvage a meal or at least a good stock out of this deal....not so my friend.  after thawing, washing and the obvious photo session...i was not so enthused about the out come.  still i went ahead and threw everything in the pot and hoped for the best.  the best never came...the blue skin turned an unappealing limpy blackish grey and the flesh was unlike any chicken i had ever seen.  hmmmmm...not so good.
next, i thought to myself... get the photo of the finished product, make it look pretty and appealing and maybe it will seem more appetizing.  not so my "Mama" always warned me that looks can be deceiving...definitly correct when it comes to food photography.  the photo looked great and i was ready to give it a try, but like i said...this one stumped me. i removed the blackish grey skin that i just knew i was not going to be able to eat, to unveil the tough, lean flesh that was streaked with black...and i mean weirdly streaked with black.  at this point (hours from the start of this little journey) i had to give up for the day...throw in the towel...raise the white flag.   i strained the broth and threw everything into a tupperware for a second chance at it some other time. 
that second chance hasn't come up's in the freezer right now.  i didn't have the heart to toss it. a