Posted in General, Recipes

Chrysanthemum Chicken


One of my oldest cookery books, ‘The Great Book of Chinese Cooking’ contains a recipe for something it calls ‘Chrysanthemum Chicken’; so named, apparently, because the appearance is supposed (with some poetic license, one presumes), to resemble the bloom of that particular flower. Now, I have to say that, as far as I am concerned, any such resemblance in that regard is a faint illusion at best. Moreover, every other recipe for Chrysanthemum Chicken I have ever come across derives its name from the fact the Chrysanthemum petals, or greens, are used as an ingredient, and not because of any particular floral quality in the presentation. Anyway… today’s dish is inspired by that old recipe and, though I have departed from the flavorings a little, my result looks quite a bit like the picture of the original… 


  • 4 Chicken thighs, bone-in, skin-on;
  • 1 medium Onion;
  • ½ cup Chicken Stock;;
  • 1 Tbsp. Sugar;
  • 2 Tbsp. Rice Wine;
  • 3 Tbsp. Soy Sauce;
  • ½ tsp. Sesame Oil;



Chop the chicken thighs in to 4 or 6 pieces (depending on the size of the thighs);



Slice the onion in half vertically and them slice each half crosswise into ¼ inch sections, breaking these apart into separate semi-circular strands.



Deep fry the chicken pieces in medium hot oil until just cooked through and beginning to brown on the outside. Set the pieces aside and keep warm.



Heat a few tablespoons of the deep-fry oil in a pan over high heat and add the onion. Stir and toss for a moment or so and then add the remaining ingredients except the chicken. Cook until the sauce is reduced and the onions are softened and caramelized.



Finally, add the chicken until all is heated through and the remaining sauce is little more than a glaze. Plate and serve immediately.


I am a lawyer by profession and my practice is Criminal... I mean, I specialize in Criminal law. My work involves travelling on Court circuits to remote Arctic communities. In between my travels I write a Food blog at

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