Chicken Char Siu

Char siu translates literally as “fork burn/roast”, an ancient method of fire-roasting wild boar.  While most modern Chinese BBQ uses domestic pork (and lots of red food coloring), the flavors are  also well suited to chicken.  Here I have marinated chicken pieces in a mixture of fermented soy, sherry, hoisin, 5-spice, local raw honey, chili and red bean paste (with organic beet powder for color), then slow-roasted (3 hours at 15 degrees) them until fork-tender.  The sticky, hot, sweet and sour flavors play well with sesame-roasted asparagus on the side..

Chicken Char Siu

7 thoughts on “Chicken Char Siu

    1. I made this one up after glancing at a half dozen or so recipes online and identify the most common ingredients; the proportions (which I didn’t write down at the time) were all to taste as a result of adding this and that to a bowl, adjusting for balance between sweet, sour, hot and umami. The beet powder was added in place of red food coloring.

      The chicken was slow-cooked at low temp both to retain moisture and to prevent the sugars from burning.

  1. Beautiful! I’m going to try to find some red bean paste with beet powder coloring. This one is definitely on my list of things to try.

    1. Thanks, Ellen!

      I haven’t seen bean paste pre-made that way. I seperately added organic beet powder to the mixture in place of the red dye, just as one might use turmeric or annatto as a natural colorant.

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