Garden Court Café: Char Siu Chicken Recipe

Char Siu Chicken at the Garden Court Café. (Amanda Gentile/Great Performances)

Garden Court Café Chef Calvin Young:
"Our twist on a classic Chinese dish. The pomegranate glaze helps differentiate it a little and brings a unique flavor. The rice cake highlights my favorite part of a good fried rice — the crispy, caramelized layer of rice on the bottom of the pan."

Serves four.


4 chicken thighs, boneless and skinless
4 tbsp garlic minced
4 tbsp ginger minced
3 tbsp Five Spice
1/4 cup Shaoxing rice wine
4 bunches of Chinese broccoli — trimmed to remove the base but leaving a small amount of stem on each leaf.

Salt to taste.

1 quart pomegranate juice
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup rice vinegar

Rice Cake
2 cups cooked sushi rice
1/4 cup scallions sliced
1/4 cup shittakes sliced
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp rice vinegar



Marinate the chicken in the 2 tbsp of the garlic, 2 tbsp of the ginger, 2 tbsp of the Five Spice and Shoaxing wine. Let marinate for at least an hour.


  1. Pour pomegranate juice in a saucepan and place over high heat. Add 1 tbsp garlic, 1 tbsp ginger, and reserved five spice. Boil until reduced by half.
  2. Add honey and rice vinegar and boil for another 10 minutes.
  3. Taste and adjust to your preference with more honey or vinegar.

Rice Cake:

  1. Mix rice with scallions, shittakes, sugar, rice vinegar, and a pinch of salt. Adjust seasoning as needed.
  2. Press the rice into a ring mold or by hand to make a rice cake.
  3. Sear the rice cakes in a pan over medium heat until golden brown. Set aside and keep warm.


  1. Sauté Chinese broccoli with garlic and ginger until the stems are tender. Set aside and keep warm.
  2. Preheat an oiled grill pan over high heat until the oil starts to smoke — a standard skillet works as well. Place the chicken in and sear until golden brown with a little bit of char.
  3. Spoon the glaze over and finish the chicken in a 350° oven.
  4. Plate the chicken with rice cakes and Chinese broccoli. Spoon a little more glaze over the chicken after it has been plated.



Related Links

Garden Court Café at Asia Society New York
Interview with Chef Calvin Nguyen

For questions or concerns regarding the Garden Court Café, please call Hesh Sarmalkar, Director of Events and Visitor Services, at 212-327-9322.