Hot and Spicy Chicken Feet

Hot and Spicy Chicken Feet

Elema / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

  • Total: 35 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
361 Calories
16g Fat
16g Carbs
32g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 361
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 21%
Saturated Fat 4g 22%
Cholesterol 95mg 32%
Sodium 951mg 41%
Total Carbohydrate 16g 6%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 32g
Calcium 64mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This hot and spicy chicken feet recipe brings Asian street food into your kitchen for you to enjoy. This amazing appetizer doesn't have much meat to it but it is packed with complex flavor. The use of sake, fresh ginger, soy sauce, hot chiles, cinnamon, and star anise, along with the classic Asian sauces—oyster and hoisin—create a delightful mixture for your taste buds. Chicken feet are eaten similar to the way you eat chicken wings—so instead of wings for your next party, try this chicken feet recipe with your guests. 

While chicken feet are known to be a favorite treat in Asian countries, the appetizer is becoming more popular here in the United States. It is also enjoyed in Trinidad and Tobago, Ukraine, Romania, Moldova, Italy, Jamaica, South Africa, Peru, and Mexico. 

Ingredients

  • 32 chicken feet (about 2 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup sake
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 6 large slices of ginger (thin, fresh)
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar (Chinese yellow rock, or 1/4 cup granulated sugar)
  • 2 chiles (dried hot, crushed)
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 buds star anise 
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 cup scallions (cut into 1-inch pieces)
  • 2 tablespoons scallion (minced)
  • Garnish: 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (toasted)

Steps to Make It

Note: while there are multiple steps to this recipe, this hot and spicy dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and cooking.

Clean the Chicken Feet

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to the brink of boil.

  3. Drop the chicken feet into the water for approximately 30 seconds. While you can do more than one chicken foot at a time, if your pot is not large enough to comfortably fit them all into the pot without overcrowding, separate them by half or thirds. Set each chicken foot aside to cool on a plate.

  4. Once all chicken feet have been dipped, start peeling off the skin one at a time. 

  5. You may find it easier to peel the top layer of the nails first before removing the skin from the rest of the foot, but either way is fine. The goal is to remove the top layer of skin and nail. 

  6. Proceed to fully cut the nails off of each chicken foot at the first joint.

Make the Recipe

  1. Rub the cleaned chicken feet with kosher salt and let stand for 10 minutes.

  2. After 10 minutes, rinse the salted chicken feet under cold water.

  3. Place feet into a pot of rapidly boiling salted water, blanch for 5 minutes and drain well. Chicken feet can be set aside and refrigerated for a day until you need to cook further.

  4. Place a 14-inch sauté pan over high heat. Add the chicken and dry-sear to lightly brown.

  5. Add the remaining ingredients (except the garnish) and bring to a simmer. Cook, covered, for about 10 minutes.

  6. Uncover and simmer until the pan is almost “dry,” tossing frequently to coat the feet as the sauce reduces.

  7. Serve, garnishing with scallion shavings and toasted sesame seeds.

Tips

  • Before you start this recipe, prepare the chicken feet for cooking by cleaning them and removing the top layer of the skin, as well as the top layer of nails. The scaly skin and nails are unusable and should be discarded. 
  • You can clean the chicken feet up to a day prior to actually preparing them in the recipe. 
  • Chicken feet freeze well and will keep for at least six months as long as they are wrapped airtight to protect them from any freezer burn.