Ming Tsai’s One-Pot Cranberry Chicken for the Holidays

Cranberries and hoisin sauce give this chicken dish a twist.

After whipping up cranberry relish for Thanksgiving and cranberry bread in-between, what to do with that leftover bag of fresh cranberries?

Why, make this effortless, satisfying, one-pot dish that has the bold flavors of Chinese hoisin sauce, red wine and fresh cranberries.

It’s from Ming Tsai’s new cookbook, “Simply Ming One-Pot Meals” (Kyle Books) by the James Beard Award-winning chef of Blue Ginger in Massachusetts, who made it to the final four of this past season’s  “Next Iron Chef” on the Food Network.

The cookbook contains 80 recipes that showcase one-pot cooking in all its variations — braising, wok-cooking, roasting, flash-frying, sauteing, tossing and soups.

This chicken dish is made in a casserole or Dutch oven. Chicken thighs are seared until caramelized on the outside. Then, jasmine rice grains are sauteed in the rendered fat of the chicken for extra oomph. If you’re counting calories, you can opt to remove most of the fat before adding the uncooked rice to the pot.

Next, garlic, scallions, hoisin sauce, red wine,  chicken stock and cranberries are added. The pot of chicken and rice then finishes cooking in the oven.

After resting for 10 minutes, lift the lid for one festive dish. The rice, which has turned a deep brown, is redolent of Asian flavors with a hint of fruitiness. The cranberries add a nice subtle tart contrast to the sweetness of the hoisin sauce.

If you’re used to picking up cranberries at this time of year merely for baking and relish-making, this dish will give you a whole new reason to stock up on an extra bag or two.

Cranberry-Hoisin Chicken ‘N’ Rice

(Serves 4)

2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil

8 chicken thighs with skin

Kosher salt and freshly ground black peppber

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 bunches scallions, sliced thin

2 cups jasmine rice

1/4 cup hoisin sauce

1 cup dry red wine

1 cup fresh cranberries

3 cups fresh chicken stock or low-sodium canned chicken broth

Preheat 375 degrees.

Choose a large ovenproof casserole with a tight-fitting lid and place the casserole over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat bottom. When oil is hot, add chicken, in batches if necessary. Season with salt and pepper and saute on all sides until lightly colored, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Add garlic and scallions to the casserole and saute, stirring, for 1 minute. Add rice and saute, stirring, for 1 minute. Add hoisin sauce and saute for 30 seconds. Add wine, deglaze,  and simmer until liquid is reduced by three quarters, about 2 minutes. Add cranberries and stock and season with salt and pepper. Return chicken to casserole and bring to a simmer.

Cover the pot, transfer to the oven, and cook until the chicken is tender and the rice is cooked, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Bring pan to the table and serve.

Wine pairing: An unoaked Chardonnay, like Morgan Metallico from California or Truro from Massachusetts

From “Simply Ming One-Pot Meals” by Ming Tsai

More: My Q&A with Ming Tsai

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