Steamed Chicken Drumsticks with Mushrooms (蒸香菇鸡腿)
December 4, 2021  Print Recipe
This dish, Steamed Chicken Drumsticks with Mushrooms, is a super tender, juicy, tasty, and yet inexpensive meaty dish. Chicken drumsticks tend to cost the least among all the chicken parts. With the rising cost of food currently happening in the US, if you want to save money on meat but not sacrifice nutrition and taste, this recipe might fit what you are looking for.
Due to its extreme tenderness and juiciness, this is actually my husband’s favorite chicken dish. The ingredients for this dish are few and flexible. If you don’t have dried shiitake mushrooms, you can use fresh ones instead. The hot chili peppers are optional. What’s more, both fresh and pickled ones work well. What I also like about this dish is that it does not require much active cooking time. Yes, you do need to soften the dried shiitake mushrooms, marinate the chicken drumsticks beforehand for at least 30 minutes, and steam for another 30 minutes. But these tasks do not require your full attention, which means you can be preparing other dishes, finishing chores, playing with your kids, or doing laundry at the same time. You don’t need to be constantly monitoring the stove at all, which makes cooking much more relaxing (at least it is for me).
The drumsticks do need to be cut into smaller pieces for the flavor to get in. If you don’t have a cleaver at home, you can most likely ask the butcher in your local grocery store to cut it for you. They usually don’t mind.
Gluten Free, Low Carb
Preparation Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 90 minutes
Servings: 2 – 4 people
- 3 chicken drumsticks (about 1 lb or 450g)
- 3 – 5 dried shiitake mushrooms 1
- 3 or more garlic cloves
- 1 green onion (green parts only)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon light soy sauce 2
- 1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine 3
- 1 teaspoon chopped chili peppers 4
- 1 teaspoon corn starch or tapioca starch
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Immerse the dried shiitake mushrooms in warm water to re-hydrate them. It can take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes depending on the size of the mushrooms.
- While re-hydrating the shiitake mushrooms, prepare the other ingredients. Use a cleaver to chop the drumsticks into smaller pieces and put them in a mixing bowl. Rinse the drumstick pieces with colder water to remove any blood seeping out from the bones. Drain and set aside.
- Peel and mince the garlic cloves. On a clean board, chop the green part of the green onion into thin slices and set aside.
- When the shiitake mushrooms have become soft, remove the stems and cut the caps into long pieces.
- Add the shiitake mushrooms, the minced garlic, and the rest of the seasonings: 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon of sugar, 1 tablespoon of light soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of Chinese rice wine, and 1 teaspoon of chopped chili peppers to the chicken drumsticks. Mix well. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap to seal the mixing bowl and place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 30 minutes (ideally 1 hour). 5
- When the chicken is done marinating, add the 1 teaspoon of corn starch and mix thoroughly. Pour everything into a plate with some depth. Drizzle the 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil on top to seal in the moisture during steaming.
- Heat a steamer under medium-high heat. You can start this 5 minutes before the chicken is done marinating. When the water boils, put the plate with the chicken drumstick pieces on the steamer rack. Make sure to remove the plastic or lid from step 5. Cover the steamer with a lid and steam for 30 minutes.
- When the 30 minutes are up, turn off the heat and remove the lid. Sprinkle the green onion slices on top. Let the plate cool for a minute or two before transferring. Enjoy while hot or warm!
- If you can’t find dried shiitake mushrooms, you can use fresh shiitake mushrooms instead.
- If you don’t have Chinese rice wine, you can use other rice wine, Japanese sake, or dry white wine instead.
- If you are gluten sensitive or intolerant, use gluten free soy sauce or tamari.
- Chopped chili peppers are optional. You can use fresh ones, pickled ones, or other types. The chili peppers are there to add just a hint of heat. It’s not meant to be overpowering. My kids sometimes cannot tell that I add chili.
- You can also put everything in a Ziploc bag to marinate in the refrigerator.
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