Cooking with Alison

Chinese (lo sui) Chicken or Duck Wings and Eggs

In Meat and Eggs on May 6, 2010 at pm

In Chiu Chow (Chinese) cuisine, a master sauce is used to make many delicious dishes.  Foods that range from boiled eggs to pork belly and whole ducks are cooked in a pot of this sauce.  It is called lo sui / lu shui, which translates to “old water”.  In restaurants, once the sauce is made up in a pot, it never gets replaced, only replenished.  The juices from the meats that are cooked in the sauce get added back to the pot and more spices are added as needed.  Some restaurants are said to have used the same old water sauce for more than 75 years.  The sauce tastes better with age.  Keep in mind that it’s boiled frequently, so there are no concerns over bacteria.  To recreate this master sauce at home, you should store your sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  If you’re not using it regularly, then you should bring it to a boil for several minutes, once every three weeks.  Or you could freeze it.  I haven’t made my own lo sui / lu shui sauce from scratch yet.  Eventually I will.  Meanwhile, I use the store bought “Chinese Marinade” by the brand Lee Kum Kee as the base for my master sauce.  I love using this to make chicken or duck wings and the wings taste great cold too.

Lo Sui (Lu Shui) Chicken Wings and Eggs Recipe

makes 3 to 4 servings

6 chicken or duck wings, cut at the joints with the tip discarded, leaving you with 12 pieces of chicken

4 hard boiled eggs, peeled (optional)

half bottle (approx. 210 ml) Chinese marinade (brand Lee Kum Kee)

1/2 cup water

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp dark soy sauce

1/2 tbsp Chinese rock sugar chopped into small pieces (or substitute with granulated white sugar)

2 tsp sesame oil

In a heavy bottomed pot or a large clay pot, bring the chinese marinade, water, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sesame oil and sugar to a boil over high heat with the lid on.  Feel free to adjust the seasoning to taste.  Then add the chicken wings and eggs.  The sauce should cover at least 3/4 of the meat and eggs.  Bring the sauce back to a boil and then reduce the heat to maintain a simmer with the lid on.  Cook for up to 10 minutes for chicken wings and eggs.  Cook for up to 15 minutes for duck wings.  If you are cooking duck wings, cook until they are cooked through and then remove them from the sauce.  If you are cooking chicken wings and eggs, remove the pot from heat when the largest chicken wing is almost cooked through.  Do not overcook the chicken wings, because they will continue to cook as they sit in the warm sauce.  Allow the chicken to cook through and absorb more colour and flavour from the sauce.  Note that the longer the meat/eggs sit in the sauce, the saltier they will become, so once they are flavoured to your liking, remove them from the sauce.  Also note that the longer the eggs stay in the sauce, the more rubbery they will become in texture.  Serve hot or chilled.

To maintain this old water sauce, strain the sauce well and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.  Once it is chilled through, you can use a spoon to remove the top layer of white fat.  If you’re not using the sauce regularly, bring it to a boil for several minutes, once every 4 to 6 weeks.  Alternatively, you could freeze this.  Before reusing it, taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings to taste.  The more times you reuse your sauce base, the better it will taste.

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