Double-Steamed Chicken With Herbs
- 1 package dried mixed Chinese herbs - (4 oz)
- 1/2 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs cut into 1" chunks
- 1/4 pound boneless lean pork cut into 1" chunks
- 6 dried black mushrooms
- 6 dried longans
- 1/2 ounce Smithfield ham thinly sliced
- 4 cups water
Rinse the herbs well in warm water; drain. Place the chicken and pork in a medium pan and cover them with water. Bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute. Drain. Wash the mushrooms and cut off the stems. Place the herbs, chicken, pork, mushrooms, longans, and ham in a Yunnan pot, 7 inches in diameter, or a 2-quart casserole. Add the water and cover the pot.
Place a steaming rack in a wok. Pour in water to just below the level of the rack and bring it to a boil. Set the pot on the rack. Cover and steam for 3 hours, adding additional water as necessary. Strain the broth and serve hot.
This recipe yields 6 servings.
Tip: Packages of mixed dried herbs, which include various leaves, barks, and roots, are sold in Chinese herbal shops, and sometimes in larger Chinese groceries with herbal counters. Just ask for herbs for making chicken soup. Longans are a dried fruit related to lychees, also sold in well-stocked Chinese groceries.
Some Chinese people consider this soup a tonic, and drink only the strained broth; but I see no reason not to eat the delicious meat as well.
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