Monday, June 20, 2011

Steamed Chicken with Red Dates - Confinement Month #4

For confinement, the menu is always chicken, chicken, chicken, chicken, chicken. Almost daily it's chicken.

From what I know, the Malays do not consume chicken for confinement as they believe it causes itchiness. My colleagues were surprised we eat so much chicken during confinement. But when I told them, we believe it's the male chickens (rooster, cockerel) that causes itchiness or other allergic reactions, and we only ask for hens during this time. And it's only virgin hens or hens that has never laid eggs.

I don't really like consuming chicken in rice wine.  And confinement menu always consist of sesame oil, herbs, wood ears and ginger. Any type of ginger.. be it turmeric or even galangal. So, far I like these to be in my food, so I find no problem when it comes to eating during confinement, as long as it's not too alchoholic.

This time, I tried a few new confinement recipes and this will be one of the new chicken dishes. More to come in this week. It'll all be about chicken.

If you ask, who cooked this? I was by the side of my confinement lady, instructing her this and that. That's how I did it this time. Or she'll prepare everything I tell her to, and I'll be the one cooking and she'll clean up everything. But it's not for every meal. It's just for new dishes or dishes I don't trust her doing it. Yeah, I'm that fussy!

Steamed Chicken with Red Dates
Recipe source: Wendyywy
Serves: 5-6

750gm chicken (3/4 of a kampung chicken/free range chicken)
40gm red dates (weighed with seeds)
3/4 tsp salt
2 Tbsp water
1 tsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp DOM

1. Chop chicken into small pieces.
2. Remove seeds from red dates and cut into smaller pieces.
3. Put salt and red dates into the bowl containing the chicken pieces and rub with fingers so that the flavour of the date infuses well with the chicken.
4. Put in water and cornstarch. Mix evenly.
5. Put in sesame oil. Mix.
6. Pour chicken onto steaming vessel (a slightly deep vessel so that the juices will not overflow and be wasted)
7. Pour DOM over chicken and steam for 20 minutes.


  1. This is good with lots of red dates.

  2. I love this dish...simple yet delicious. I normally steam the chicken with lots of ginger and raisin wine :) Delish ! DOM is good for you :) Yea...I remember my mom cooks nothing but kampung chicken chicken chicken. Chicken with fresh turmeric, chicken with DOM, chicken with wolberries and dates. I don't have a maid but my grandma cooked for me. She was a good cook, I ate 5 times a day and she took good care of me :) eat , sleep , eat and sleep :p thinking back of those nice and aromatic confinement dishes make me salivating over the keyboard now LOL!

  3. Oh.. this is yummy! I remembered I had this too.. but my grandma put in mushrooms, wan yee, wolfberries and lots of ginger. Best! I still make this off and on but hold the DOM.. instead, I use normal cooking wine.

    My grandma also made plenty other chicken dishes for me.

  4. Little inbox,

    how to eat 5 times a day? I'm even skipping breakfast sometimes and one cup of Milo is enough for me. If not cannot eat lunch. too full

    Oh... sounds delicious too.
    My grandaunt used to do a version with red dates, wanyee, dried lily, and mushrooms, more complicated on taste. My bro's fav. But i'm trying to keep this dish simple.

  5. Even not for confinement, I also love this simple and delicious dish.

  6. he he he, all chicken!

    Can also stir fry Shanghai vegetable with pork...nice!

  7. We learn so much from you Wendy! I loves steamed chicken in wine!

  8. I remember my mom used to cook a lot of chicken and pork dishes for my two SIL during their confinement too. Every dish will have loads of ginger and sesame oil. We actually like all thd dishes she prepared and don't mind eating it.

  9. this is one type of dish that i like even during normal days, i shall put in a little dom next time. Just imagine by the end of your confinement, how many chickens would you have eaten??!

  10. This is a very lady's dish. At times I would crave it too. It supposed to be very 补for women. Yum!

  11. Yummm. this looks really good! and not to mention nutritious too!


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