Chicken Steamed With Fresh Lemons (Sai Ling Mung Ching Gai)

“This recipe is from Eileen Yin-Fei Lo's "Chinese Chicken Cookbook". There are quite a few chicken plus lemon dishes already on Recipezaar, including Italian (chicken piccata), Indian and Thai. This recipe is quite different, since it is steamed (actually, double steamed, which makes for a very intense, clear broth) ... the ingredient list is imposing, but the process is really easy ... and the flavor is fabulous -- very different from the usual, thickly coated restaurant dish. As Eileen says in her introduction, the translation of the sai ling mung refers to "foreign lemons" because this is designed to use western-style lemons. Added comment (Oct 2008): Thanks to all the reviewers for their comments and photos. First, many of the recipes from Eileen Yin-Fei Lo's book are her remembrances of her family's (especially her aunt's) home cooking in rural China, very traditional ... so modern taste would definitely think about adding to the spectrum of spices used in this recipe. I think she would approve of changes to reflect individual palates. Second, looking at the sodium content of the analysis, I agree that getting 32% of your RDA in one dish is a bit much ... you could reduce the amount of soy sauce, but if you do, you might want to increase either the wine or oyster sauce (or just add water) to maintain the liquid volume ... I'd think first of reducing the 1/2 tsp salt directly and then reducing the soy if I needed more salt removed ....”
1hr 5mins

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix all the ingredients except the chicken and the red bell pepper (garnish) into a bowl, mix well.
  2. Add the chicken, mix to coat and allow to marinate for 20 minutes.
  3. Put the chicken and marinade into a steamproof dish (see note below).
  4. Place the dish in a steamer and steam for 10 minutes.
  5. Turn the chicken over and steam for another 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  6. Turn off the heat.
  7. Remove the chicken from the steamer.
  8. Sprinkle the red bell pepper over the chicken.
  9. Serve over cooked rice, with a slice/wedge of lemon.
  10. (Note re steamproof dishes)-- You may want to"temper" any dish that is not known to be"steamproof" or"ovenproof"-- here's how (steps 11-14).
  11. Put 5-6 cups of cold water in a wok, place a cake rack in the wok and place the dish to be tempered on the rack.
  12. Make certain the water covers the dish completely.
  13. Cover with the wok cover and bring the water to a boil.
  14. Allow the water to boil for at least 10 minutes, then turn off the heat and let the wok and water come to room termperature.

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