Red stewing 红烧 is uniquely Chinese, similar to ordinary stewing, but here the food is cooked in large quantities of soy sauce and water rather than in water alone. It is the soy sauce that makes the dish rich, tasty, and reddish brown.
Red stewing 红烧 is uniquely Chinese, similar to ordinary stewing, but here the food is cooked in large quantities of soy sauce and water rather than in water alone. It is the soy sauce that makes the dish rich, tasty, and reddish brown. It is usually made of pork, beef, ham, chicken, duck, or carp. When these are prepared without soy sauce, but by the same technique, the color will always be light.
The Chinese cooking technique is essentially that employed for making a general stew. The meat is browned and then the liquid is introduced and brought to a boil over high heat, which is progressively reduced until quite low. Red stewing is used primarily for cooking meats. Vegetables if included, are added later just before serving or towards the end of cooking. Various seasonings, flavors and condiments are added to red-stewed dishes such as soy, sherry, ginger, scallions, cilantro and many more.
Stewing is also a slow process and the meats may stew one to six hours, depending on the cut of meat, and may even he cooked a day ahead and rewarmed. In fact, with some dishes the flavor may be enhanced if the stew is refrigerated. It may be kept so for a week and sometimes reheated a numher of times without harm. When served cold, vegetables should not be added. Hun g-shu bean cake, squab, and chicken are commonly served cold. Cooked stew can also be poured into a mold and chilled, so that the sauce will become a rich aspic.
For this Chinese cooking skill Red-stewing, also called red cooking, some ingredients need to be pre-fried, some not, imparting a reddish tinge to the final product. Red stewing is a popular cooking technique in eastern China because there is where the finest soy sauce is produced in the China. In the final stage, the food is simmered over high or low heat till the sauce is reduced. Red-cooking is the typical family cooking. Red cooking has the advantage common to slow-cooking dishes that the leftovers keep well and can be eaten cold or warmed over. Cold red-cooked jelly of meat, chicken, etc., is especially good. If you are careful to warm it just to boiling point each time after use, the pot can keep for nearly two weeks!