Chicken steamed in arak

March 14, 2011  •  Category:


These days I have zero time to cook; so I am concentrating on dishes that take less than 10 minutes of prep time; this one is borrowed from the  Japanese cuisine, where chicken is steamed in sake. Found it on a great site, the japanese food report.

I am usingarak, our Lebanese national drink (think pastis, ouzo, raki, etc).

Just pour some arak (or sake or whatever) in a pot, add the same volume of water; place a steamer basket in the pot and plop your chicken on the basket; now the chicken is not in contact with the drink! it is just a hair above. Cover and bring to a simmer. The chicken will steam for 45 minutes. Keep the lid on, (first check it to make sure it is cooked), turn off the heat, but keep the bird in its pot, covered.

Uncover when it has cooled a bit and eat a lovely, VERY MOIST, anise-fragrant, bird.

and call it a day!


27 Comments  •  Comments Feed

  1. Devaki says:

    Oh this is perfect Joumana and reminds me of the incredibly steamed chicken rice that is the hallmark of hainese cuicine and might as well be proclaimed as the National dish in Singapore. Awesome…not quite boozy chicken 🙂

    chow! Devaki @

  2. Sonia says:

    this is the way how Chinese usually steam chicken with chinese wine, look like you have the similar version, sound so good.

  3. Maria @ Scandifoodie says:

    I love learning all these new techniques and ideas from you! I’m very intrigued by this dish 🙂

  4. Familycook says:

    Hey Jumana, I end my day by reading your blog every single day. I liked the “zero time you have to cook”. And I have in the negatives…and always resort to quick-fixes. Love your steamed chicken!

  5. domi says:

    Bonjour Joumana, une bien belle façon de cuisiner cette tendre volaille, qui bien que préparée en toute légèreté doit être très parfumée. Une recette bien tentante et gourmande, j’ en ai l’ eau à la bouche, bisous et passe une belle journée

  6. arthur says:

    This is how I steam chicken too! I’ll try it with arak this time to have a real taste of Beirut!
    I get my brik at a Middle Eastern store in San Francisco along with kataifi and Phylo dough, but a Spring roll pastry is just as good to use. I found the TYJ brand from Singapore the closest thing to the brik. In Texas, you might just order it from

  7. oum mouncifrayan says:

    hhhhmmm, ça me fait drolement envie !

  8. Angie's Recipes says:

    It must be very juicy and tasty steamed with sake!

  9. Doc says:

    Yummy, I love the dishes poached like that! Please don’t get too busy to cook-your food is amazing!!

  10. T.W Barritt says:

    What a lovely way to prepare chicken – also healthy and low in fat. I’ll bet there are other variations of liquid that wouldnwork well, too.

  11. Joanne says:

    I LOVE this adaptation of a traditionally Japanese dish! Sounds delicious!

  12. Mary says:

    This is a very interesting way to prepare chicken. I’ll wager the bird was moist and extremely flavorful. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  13. rebecca says:

    wow what a cool way to cook chicken love it

  14. Belinda @zomppa says:

    Serious? That’s it? I’m totally in!! Sounds so moist and ueber flavorful. Brilliant.

  15. Eve@CheapEthnicEatz says:

    I just cannot imagine what a anise infused chicken would taste like but I am more than willing to try, great idea!

  16. Priya says:

    Steamed chicken,thats truly new for me..

  17. Barbara says:

    10 minutes? Wow! That is some recipe, Joumana! I am sure I have never steamed a chicken. Very interesting!
    I use sake over fish, add a couple other things, wrap it in parchment and bake it. Yum! No pans, either!

  18. sweetlife says:

    great quick dinner idea, love your serving platter..hope your days gets easier


  19. shayma says:

    joumana, this sounds very fascinating, it’s the typical Hainanese way. delicious. and i hope youre working on some really interesting project these days if you have zero time to cook 🙂 xx shayma

  20. Lyndsey says:

    I like the idea of such a short prep time, and new ways to prepare chicken! I love anise flavor.

  21. Diane says:

    This one is bookmarked for use very soon. I love arak so chicken with a flavour has to be good. Diane

  22. blackbookkitchendiar says:

    this dish sounds amazing! i cant wait to try this out! thank you for sharing this.

  23. Katie says:

    I used to make a Chinese dish – Drunken Chicken, that was similar… ages ago. Had completely forgotten it. Like this, not particularly pretty (sorry) but absolutley delicious!

  24. tigerfish says:

    Oh I am definitely for dishes that takes no time to prep. and cook! I have done a few recently! And they are delicious too. Quite amazing.

  25. Banana Wonder says:

    This is brilliant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. Magic of Spice says:

    What a wonderful way to steam chicken, I bet it is unbelievably tender.

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