When I can’t get to Chinatown in Boston or New York, I cook my version of a recipe I discovered many years ago in “The Chinese Cookbook,” a wonderful source of information by former NY Times food critic Craig Claiborne and Virginia Lee. Whenever possible, I use a whole pasture-raised chicken.
This recipe can be made gluten-free by using GF hoisin and soy sauce, available in most supermarkets.
1 whole chicken, about 6 lbs., or 2 smaller chickens (pictured)
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 tablespoon soy sauce
6 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 teaspoons sesame oil
4 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Remove all the giblets from chicken. Rub the soy sauce all over the chicken. Then rub the peanut oil all over the chicken.
Combine the Chinese five spice, garlic, salt and pepper in a bowl. Season the entire chicken, including inside the cavity, with this mixture.
Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the chicken in a pan lined with aluminum foil (cleanup will be easier) and bake.
Meanwhile, combine the hoisin sauce and sesame oil in a small bowl. When the chicken is about 15 minutes away from being done, brush it with the hoisin/sesame oil mixture. Cook it another 15 minutes until the chicken has a nice dark glaze. Don’t let it burn!
Let it rest about 15 minutes before carving.