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Simmered Winter melon with Chicken Drumettes
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
30 mins

Simmered Winter Melon with Chicken Drumettes is a delicious dish full of flavour. The texture of the semi-transparent winter melon is so delicate. It can be served as a main or a side dish.

Don't forget to see the section 'MEAL IDEAS' below the recipe card! It gives you a list of dishes that I have already posted and this recipe that can make up a complete meal. I hope it is of help to you.

Recipe Type: Main, Side
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: chicken drumette, drumette recipe, winter melon recipe
Serves: 2 as a main
Author: Yumiko
Ingredients (tbsp=15ml, cup=250ml)
  • 400g / 0.9lb winter melon seeds and skin removed (note 1)
  • 8 drumettes (about 570g / 1.3lb, note 2)
  • 4 shiitake mushrooms stem removed (about 60g / 2.1oz)
  • 1 tbsp oil
Simmering Sauce
  1. Cut winter melon into 3-4cm / 1⅛-1½" cubes (note 5).

  2. Place winter melon pieces on a microwave-safe plate, skin side down, and loosely cover with cling wrap. Microwave for 4 minutes.

  3. Make a small incision along the bone on each drumette.

  4. Heat oil in a shallow saucepan over high heat. Put the drumettes into the pan and brown both sides of the chicken pieces.

  5. Add the Simmering Sauce ingredients, put the lid on and bring it to a boil.
  6. Shift the lid slightly to make a small opening to let the steam go out, reduce the heat to simmer and cook for 20 minutes.

  7. Add winter melon pieces and mushrooms to the pan, turn the heat up to bring it to a boil.
  8. Reduce the heat to simmer for 5 minutes with the lid on. Then remove the lid and simmer for another 5 minutes. Turn the heat off.
  9. Transfer the chicken, winter melon and shiitake mushrooms to serving bowls, clustering each ingredient together. Pour some sauce over it and serve while hot (note 6).

Recipe Notes

1. By removing the skin and seeds, you will lose 25-30% of the total weight of the winter melon depending on how thin/thick you trimmed when removing the skin. My winter melon with seeds and skin on was 550g / 1.2lb.

2. I used drumettes because I had so many of them left over after making Chicken Wing Gyōza so many times. But you can also use chicken wingettes.

3. Niboshi dashi adds a distinctive dried anchovy flavour to the simmering sauce and makes it tastier in my view. Niboshi dashi powder is also available at Japanese grocery stores. If you prefer, you can use awase dashi.

4. I used store-bought shiro dashi because it’s handy and easy to use but you can make it at home.

If you don’t have shiro dashi, substitute with 5 tsp light soy + 2 tbsp mirin + ½ tsp salt and use a slightly stronger niboshi dashi (by adding a couple of extra dried anchovies when making niboshi dashi).

5. The section, What's In My Simmered Winter Melon with Drumettes shows you how to remove the seeds, peel the skin and cut the winter melon into cubes.

I do preparation of winter melon while simmering the drumettes.

6. You will find that there is quite a bit of sauce left over even after serving some of it. This sauce is very tasty. You can use it as a ramen broth without anything added to it.

7. Nutrition per serving as a main. it is assumed that 50% of the simmering sauce is consumed.

serving: 678g calories: 532kcal fat: 34g (52%) saturated fat: 7.7g (39%) trans fat: 0g polyunsaturated fat: 7g monounsaturated fat: 16g cholesterol: 166mg (56%%) sodium: 1186mg (48%) potassium: 817mg (23%) carbohydrates: 15g (4%) dietary fibre: 7.3g (31%) sugar: 6.2g protein: 36.1g vitamin a: 0% vitamin c: 44% calcium: 5% iron: 12%