Plum Good Chicken

The Chinese method of poaching chicken before baking guarantees a far more tender chicken than traditional western baked chicken and lends itself to using the juicy leftovers for fabulous chicken salad. I learned about this by reading a Chinese cookbook more than twenty years ago.

I'd bought the book hoping to learn the secret of making Chinese boneless barbequed pork. The pork was a failure but this chicken method has become my favorite. The glaze is my own version of Chinese plum glaze -- apricot jam or mandarin marmalade make a lovely glaze too but I always come back to plum. All fruit sugar free jams can be substituted for a low sugar diet. Yummy.

1 whole chicken (3-4 pounds)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1/ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons plum jelly
2 tablespoons mango chutney
1/2 teaspoon honey

Rub chicken with soy sauce inside and out, generously season with black pepper. Put it in a pan with about 1 inch of cold water. Slowly bring it to a simmer, turn the heat down to med/low, cover, and let it simmer for 30 minutes. While the bird is steaming, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the chicken from the boiling water after 30 minutes and place into a roasting pan. In a small microwave safe bowl stir plum jelly, mango chutney and honey. Microwave jelly glaze on high for 1 minute then stir well before basting entire chicken. Put chicken in the oven, immediately lower heat to 325 degrees F. Bake for 45 minutes, basting with plum sauce again at the 30 minutes mark. Drizzle a side salad of mixed greens, apple chunks, dried cranberries and crumbled blue cheese with French dressing, pour a glass of sparkling cider and enjoy.

Serves 4.


  1. This sounds WONDERFUL. I should think one could make the sauce on the stove, however, don't you? I'm not a microwave girl.

  2. @Tinky-- Sure thing. The only reason to heat the sauce is to make it easier to baste the chicken since jelly liquifies when heated. A few minutes in a small pan on medium low would certainly do the trick.

  3. yum yum. moist tender chicken. thanks for the tips.


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