Tea-Smoked Chicken

For a different flavor, try simmering the chicken prior to steaming in the black tea leaves.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 40 minutesTotal: 1 hour 45 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 6


  • 2 Tbsp. dark soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1½ tsp. Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
  • ½ green onion, minced
  • 1 whole chicken (3 lb.)
  • 3 Tbsp. black tea leaves
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ⅛ tsp. ground Szechwan peppercorns
  • ½ cup uncooked rice


  • Mix together the dark soy sauce, sugar, rice wine, and green onion. Rub over the chicken and marinate for 1 hour.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the tea leaves, brown sugar, Szechwan pepper, and rice. Set aside.
  • Prepare a bamboo steamer and steam the chicken for about 45 minutes, until it is cooked.
  • Cover the bottom and the inside of the wok with several layers of aluminum foil. Place the smoking spices at the bottom of the wok. Place a cake rack inside the wok and place the chicken on the rack. Turn the heat up. When smoke appears in a few places (about 10–15 minutes), cover the chicken with the lid and adjust the heat so that the stream of smoke remains steady. Continue smoking until the chicken turns a deep brown (about 15 minutes).