Chinese Five Spice Chicken


If you want to give a chicken dish a somewhat exotic taste, then think about using Chinese Five Spice.  This is usually found in the supermarkets as five spice powder, and the common spices are:

Star anise (bajiao)

Cloves (dingxiang)

Chinese cinnamon (rougui)

Sichuan pepper (huajiao)

Fennel seeds (xiao huixiang)

Other recipes may contain anise seed or ginger root, nutmeg, turmeric, Amomum villosum pods, Amomum cardamomum pods, licorice, Mandarin orange peel or galangal.  In South China Cinnamomum loureiroi and Mandarin orange peel is commonly used as a substitute for Cinnamomum cassia and cloves, respectively, producing a different flavor for southern five-spice powders.

The taste is so distinctive you should use it on special occasions to “spice up” something mundane.


Cooking Method

Place the chicken pieces in a large dish or plastic bag.  A Ziploc is best.

Mix the remaining ingredients and pour over the chicken.

Refrigerate overnight turning once.

Transfer the chicken to a baking dish and brush with the marinade.

Cook uncovered in a preheated 350F (180C) oven, brushing once or twice with the marinade, until the chicken is done, about one hour.