Phoenix and Dragon

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as a Main Course .

Appears in

Chinese Technique

By Ken Hom

Published 1981

  • About


  • 4 thin slices Smithfield ham
  • 1 whole chicken breast (about 1 pound), boned and butterflied
  • 4 pieces fresh caul fat
  • ¼ cup water chestnut powder, flour, or cornstarch
  • 4 cups peanut oil for deep-frying


Deep-frying, stir-frying

  1. Lay 2 slices of ham on one side of the butterflied breast. Refold the breast, enclosing the ham. The ham flavors the chicken from the inside.

  2. Lay the breast on a sheet of caul fat.

  3. Roll it up tight. The caul is sticky, so it needs nothing to seal it.

  4. Dust the surface with water chestnut powder, flour, or cornstarch. Shake off the excess.

  5. Heat the oil in a wok to 350 degrees (moderate). Slide the chicken breasts into the oil one by one. When they have browned (about 5 minutes), remove one from the oil and press it. If it feels mushy, it needs further cooking. Remove and drain the chicken.

  6. Slice the chicken crosswise diagonally into ½-inch pieces.

  7. Arrange the pieces over vegetable sauce in a pattern to show off the contrast in colors and shapes.

  • May be deep-fried ahead of time, then warmed through in the sauce just before serving.
  • Suggested Beverage: Sauvignon Blanc or white Graves