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Red Glutinous Wine Chicken

Red Glutinous Wine Chicken Recipe

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Update (Jan 2014): First posted in Apr 2011, now updated with new photos and improved recipe.

This is a homely recipe for chicken cooked in red glutinous rice, or more famously known as Hong Zao Ji (红槽鸡) in the local Chinese foo chow (hock chew 福州) community.  This dish is very nourishing and beneficial especially for ladies. It is a popular confinement dish (the month of recuperation after childbirth), but thankfully you do not need to be on confinement to enjoy this dish.

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I acquired the liking for this dish from my mother. I’m not sure if you are put off by the red hue of the chicken (for I was when I was a child), but if you ever have a chance to taste this dish, do give it a try – I sure was glad I eventually tasted it and there was no turning back after.

Home-made Red Glutinous Wine Lees

Home-made Red Glutinous Wine Lees

I’ve cooked this dish so frequently now that the cooking method has evolved to become somewhat comfortably sloppy – for example when I am busy I don’t even marinate the chicken before cooking. But you know what, it still tastes great. To me, the secret in making this dish lies not on your cooking expertise, but whether you can procure good quality wine and wine lees. The quality of the wine lees can make or break this dish. I’ve tried supermarket wine lees and it was really terrible (no wine fragrance with a sourish aftertaste). When my mother went back to her hometown and brought back her home town’s red wine lees, I instantly knew what good wine lees are – the taste was superb, and no matter how I cooked the dish, it still turned out delicious. Yes, wine making is an art. Currently, I got my supply of home-made wine lees from my auntie (sorry, she is not taking orders), and for the wine, I use any rice wine (sometimes the supermarket sells Foochow rice wine but personally I don’t think it is special). If you are lucky enough to have both home-made wine lees and red glutinous wine, that will be perfect. For the extra wine fragrance, I drizzle 2 tablespoons of good quality Hua Diao Jiu as a finishing touch. The result is heavenly, judging by how we always fought at the table for the last bit of gravy.

36 comments on “Red Glutinous Wine Chicken”

  1. It does look very interesting. I have use glutinous black rice, but not red rice. I actually like the color.

  2. is this suitable for children since it has wine on it?

  3. I’m a foo chow girl, and I LOVE THIS DISH. Everytime I’m back in Singapore, I never fail to ask my grandmother to whip me up this dish and I would savour every single bit. Just this dish, and rice, would make me an extremely happy girl! I do agree that the home-made ones are the best, the store bought ones simply cannot put up a fight!

  4. your mom is foo chow?! Same here!! Omg I’m so happy to find this online! I’m a big fan of your website!! Keeep up the goos work!

  5. My mom made us some rice wine and beside ground pork mee sua soup. This is another version I can make with the wineless. Made it last night, I can’t stop eating it!! Thanks for the great recipe!

  6. I came across your website by accident one afternoon at work, and started to browse through… I couldnt believe my eyes when I saw this recipe!! My dad was from hock chew so mum used to cook this on every one’s birthday. It sure brings back all the memory..I use to ‘smuggle’ the ang chow from home into here when I was at Uni. And so many of the other recipes are so familiar and what mum used to make, and been forgotten after all these years. I am a big fan now, will try many of your recipes sooooon !
    Thank you, Witty!

    • thanks for your kind comment, JT! happy to hear from those who love and appreciate these simple & delicious home-town favourite dishes =)

  7. p.s. I live in Sydney.

  8. Hi , may I know if they deliver red wine lees and mee sua to Singapore in big amount like 10 packets of wine lees and 10 mee sua ? Thank you

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