Wings or Gai Yeur
| Chicken wings are a popular dish with
Cantonese people and can be cooked in various ways.
The same is true for Chicken Leg or drumsticks, which
are called 'Gai Bei'. At late night street restaurants
these are usually barbequed, often with too much inappropriate
Our home-cooked recipe is one my wife prepares frequently,
and is delicious. She proffers subtle variations depending
upon her mood, but I give the full recipe below.
Chicken wings and drumsticks are sold at
every supermarket and wet market. These are often
relatively small, so you may want to buy 1 dozen
or more to feed a couple of people.
You will often find these frozen, which are ideal
to take home for the freezer. Be careful at wetmarket's,
as sometimes they defrost whilst on display -
so smell them to ensure they are still fresh.
Alternatively, buy fresh ones from one of the
chicken counters. These will also tend to be a
Yesterday I watched my wife as she prepared these -
and this is exactly what she did...
1. Wash the chicken wings and leave
them to dry for a few minutes.
2. Take a handful of Kosher or Rock
Salt and rub well into the wings using both hands (Over
3. Cover well with Soy Sauce and leave
to marinade for at least 1-hour.
4. Put the wok on to heat adding a teaspoon
of cooking oil.
5. Smash one or two Chinese garlic
and add to the wok, stirring well for the first few
6. Add the chicken wings and juice,
stirring frequently to begin with. You are searing the
outside to retain natural juices.
|7. Add a little water by swilling
it in the marinade dish first so as to keep all
the juices, and then add to the wok. When bubbling
away happily, stir well and reduce the heat to
a slow simmer.
8. Cover and leave for 30 minutes,
checking occasionally. You are looking to retain
a little juice for cooking at all times - otherwise
the wings will simply burn. Stir every 5-minutes
9. Remove the lid
and turn up the heat. If you time this correctly
you can quickly burn away all the liquid and briefly
brown the outsides.
10. Serve before they begin to
Present to table in a suitable dish, and know these
go extremely well with chips (Fries) and a home made
As above until part 8. This time we are going to add
a full cup of water or more (Still using the marinade
dish), in order to create a light and beautiful natural
gravy. A cup = half a pint. So picking up from above:
8. Add 1 cup of water and return to
the boil. Stir well before reducing the heat to a slow
simmer. Cover and leave for 30 minutes. Check every
5 minutes or so, topping up the water as it assimilates
into a thin stock, and stir to prevent the chance of
9. Remove the lid and turn up the heat.
Add water so the wings are semi covered in fluid. Add
a pinch of salt and stir well in. Add a large pinch
of Chicken Bouillon granules and again, stir well in.
Pay attention for the next 5-minutes, as the bouillon
acts in similar manner to cornflour, thickening the
gravy. Therefore you are looking for a light gravy and
may need to add more water. Keep stirring every few
minutes. This should settle after 5 minutes.
10. Once you are happy with the consistency
of the gravy, serve to table in an appropriate dish.
I would serve this on a bed of potatoe discs (Like chips,
but cut crosswise and boiled). They are also excellent
with a simple bowl of rice.
I find both recipes above deliver a beautifully succulent
chicken of mild and exquisite taste. If you prefer something
with a bit more 'zing', then here's what you do...
Follow the main recipe up to stage 8, and until there
is little liquid remaining and you are about to start
the final few minutes cooking.
9. This time we are going to add some
hot chilli powder, which is readily available at any
wetmarket. Alternatively you could add fresh chopped
chilli's, or some chilli sauce - of which I highly recommend
the Guilin version - See Condiments
Throw this into the wok as you turn up the heat and
stir well in. We are looking to sear this onto the skin
without burning, so it is quick and easy cooking. Perhaps
1 teaspoon of juice is all that remains in the wok when
Serve to table with a sour cream or sesame seed dip.
Add a tablespoon of Plum Sauce instead and flash fry
for a sweeter alternative.
We cannot make 'Crispy Chicken Wings' properly using
this method, as the marinade and cooking is quite different.
For an authentic Char Siu version (Crispy Wings) please
see our 'Siu Mei'
This information is as supplied by ourselves, and ably
supported by our friends and various internet portals.