Chilli and plum sauce wings

Chilli and plum sauce wings

Chinese Unchopped
10 mins
Cooking time
40 mins
Martin Poole

Certain meats like chicken wings or pork belly are quite difficult to cook quickly from raw on a grill or barbecue as the fatty skin tends to catch and burn much sooner than the meat itself takes to cook. Braising the chicken wings first helps to break down the waxiness of the skin and packs the flavour of the braising liquid into the meat, while cooking it through thoroughly. Cooking your chicken wings this way gives them a perfect chargrilled finish that makes them irresistibly moreish.


Quantity Ingredient
a thumb-size piece ginger
1 garlic clove, finely diced
1 large red chilli, finely diced
300g chicken wings
1/4 teaspoon chinese five-spice
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
300ml water
a small handful coriander sprigs, to garnish

The sauce

Quantity Ingredient
4 tablespoons plum sauce
1 teaspoon chilli bean sauce
a dash dark soy sauce


  1. Slice the ginger into fine matchsticks. Finely dice the garlic and chilli.
  2. Mix the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl or ramekin.
  3. BUILD YOUR WOK CLOCK: place your chicken wings at 12 o’clock, then arrange the five-spice, ginger, garlic, chilli, sauce bowl and coriander clockwise around the plate.
  4. Heat the vegetable oil in a medium-sized saucepan over a medium heat. Add the chicken wings and cook, turning, for 2–3 minutes until browned on all sides.
  5. Add the five-spice, ginger, garlic and chilli and cook, stirring, for a further minute, then pour over the sauce ingredients and bring to a boil. Cook for 3–5 minutes, stirring constantly, until the sauce has reduced and is coating the chicken wings. Add enough hot water just to cover the chicken pieces, bring to a simmer and leave to cook, covered, for 15–20 minutes over a low heat until the chicken is cooked through but the skin is still intact. Transfer the wings onto a roasting tray using a slotted spoon, reserving the sauce for basting.
  6. Finish the wings off on a hot barbecue or put under a hot grill for 3–5 minutes, basting with the excess sauce every minute or so, until they are lightly charred and caramelised. Serve garnished with a few coriander sprigs.


  • You can swap out the wings for chicken thighs and legs and follow the same cooking process – just be sure to braise thicker pieces of meat for at least 25 minutes to ensure they are properly cooked through.
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