Fragrant Chinese Broth

By • March 1, 2010 6 Comments

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Author Notes: I first discovered this incredibly aromatic broth while poaching a duck for Martin Yan's Peking Duck recipe from his Chinatown cookbook. The poaching liquid was so delicious, we reused it for hot and sour soup -- incredible! I've since made some adjustments and taken a few suggestions from Fuschia Dunlop's aromatic broth recipe in her cookbook Land of Plenty. I like to use this broth for any Asian soup, even something as simple as wonton or noodle soup. I list the tangerine peel as optional because it can be hard to track down if you don't live near a good Asian grocer. student epicure

Serves 8

  • 8 whole star anise
  • 1 large knob ginger, washed, but left unpeeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons Sichuan peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns, like Tellicherry
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 4 cardamon pods, crushed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 scallions, left whole and trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
  • 1 leftover chicken carcass
  1. Secure the star anise, ginger, Sichuan peppercorns, black peppercorns, fennel seeds, cardamom, bay leaf, and cinnamon sticks in a piece of cheesecloth tied with string. If you don't have cheesecloth, place the ingredients in a large coffee filter, fold over the open end, and staple close. Place the spice bundle in a 5-quart stock pot, along with the soy sauce, scallions, brown sugar, and chicken. Fill pot with water.
  2. Heat water to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Simmer half covered for about 1 hour. Remove spice bundle, scallions, and chicken.

More Great Recipes: Chicken|Vegetables|Soups|Fennel|Soup

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Comments (6) Questions (0)


almost 2 years ago Joan Bauer

I am making it right now and it smells scrumtous! Loved the idea of the coffee filter in lieu of the cheesecloth! Very clever! Thanks for the great recipe and tip!


over 2 years ago Trena Heinrich

This recipe makes a very tasty broth. I like to make a large batch and freeze it in 2 cup containers. I make rice in my rice cooker and pour some broth over it in a bowl with green onions for a savory snack...yummy!


over 5 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

How large is a "large knob"? I.e., assuming you have a piece of root that is about one inch in diameter, how long would it be to get the correct amount? Thank you.


over 5 years ago student epicure

I would say a good two inches, if you have a piece of ~1 inch diameter. Hope you enjoy it!


over 5 years ago Teri

I made this last night with a carcass that I'd originally stuffed full of fresh fennel fronds and garlic. I put the whole thing in the pot, along with the leftover roasted onion and fennel from the previous meal. Then I followed your recipe (with only tellicherry pepper), added extra salt, and it was so good. I ate the broth for dinner over a little leftover rice. I've never made broth good enough to eat as its own meal. Thanks!


over 5 years ago student epicure

Wow - yum! Glad you enjoyed it. And thanks for letting me know! That warms my heart.