Phoenix claws


Phoenix claws (feng zhao) is an elegant name for these fragrant chicken feet, which is very popular in Chinese cuisine.


– Chicken claws 600 g (1 lb 52/5 oz)
– Vinegar 1 tsp
– Maltose 1 tsp
– Cooking oil for deep-frying
– Spring onion (scallion) 1 stalk, cut into 5-cm (3-in) lengths
– Star anise 5
– Szechuan peppercorns 3 g (1/10 oz)
– Ginger slices 30 g (1 oz)
– Potato starch 20 g (2/3 oz)
– Red chillies 3, de-seeded and sliced

– Salt 1 tsp
– Chicken powder 1 tsp
– Sugar 1 tsp
– Ground white pepper a dash
– Sesame oil a dash

– Minced garlic 20 g (2/3 oz)
– Fermented black beans 1 Tbsp, rinsed
– Char siew sauce 2 tsp
– Guilin chilli sauce 1 tsp
– Chu hou sauce 1 tsp
– Seafood (hoisin) sauce 2 tsp
– Salt 5 g (1/6 oz)
– Chicken powder 5 g (1/6 oz)
– Ground white pepper a dash
– Sesame oil a dash
– Cooking oil a dash


Step 1: 
Wash chicken claws and cut off nails from the tips, then halve each claw.

Step 2: 
Coat chicken claws evenly with vinegar and maltose. Blanch in boiling water, then set aside.

Step 3: 
Heat oil in a wok. Deep-fry chicken claws over high heat until golden brown. Remove from heat and place chicken claws into a mixing bowl. Mix seasoning ingredients with chicken claws.

Step 4: 
Add spring onion, star anise, Szechuan peppercorns and ginger slices. Pour in just enough water to cover chicken claws. Boil or steam for 45 minutes over medium heat.

Step 5: 
Meanwhile, prepare sauce ingredients. Fry half of the garlic until browned and fragrant. Mix with raw garlic and set aside. Fry fermented black beans until fragrant and set aside.

Step 6: 
Rinse chicken claws under cold running water. Drain and coat evenly with potato starch.

Step 7: 
Mix all sauce ingredients together. Pour the sauce over coated chicken claws and steam for 5 minutes over medium heat.

Step 8: 
Garnish with chilli slices and serve immediately.

Food: Phoenix claws

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