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Sichuan mouth-watering chicken
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5 from 10 votes

Mouth-watering chicken (Kou Shui Ji, 口水鸡)

A vibrant dish with multiple layers of flavour, mouth-watering chicken is a classic of Sichuan cuisine. It makes a great cold dish for a festive feast.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: Chicken, Salad, Sichuan
Servings: 3 servings
Author: Wei Guo


Group 1

Group 2

  • 2 tablespoon raw peanuts/cashew nuts skinless

Group 3

  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 60 ml fresh chicken stock (made with the ingredients from Group 1) ¼ cup
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon black rice vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt or to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground Sichuan pepper see note 1

Group 4

  • 1 stalk scallions finely chopped
  • 60 ml homemade chilli oil ¼ cup, see note 2
  • Toasted sesame seeds


Cook the chicken

  • Place all the ingredients from Group 1 into a pot filled with water (enough to immerse the chicken).
  • Bring it to a full boil then turn the heat down. Leave to simmer with a lid on for 10 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and keep the chicken in the pot (covered) for a further 10 minutes.
  • Then transfer the chicken into a bowl of cold water (ideally with ice cubes). Leave to cool for 10 minutes.

Toast the nuts

  • While waiting for the chicken to cook, toast the peanuts/cashew nuts in a cold wok over a low heat until they become lightly brown.
  • Leave to cool then crush them into small pieces.

Prepare the sauce

  • Combine all the ingredients from group 3 (see note 1).

Assemble the dish

  • Carefully remove the bones of the chicken legs. Slice the flesh into 1-2 cm wide strips.
  • Pour the sauce into a serving plate. Lay the chicken in.
  • Garnish with crushed peanuts/cashew nuts and scallions.
  • Pour the chilli oil (see note 2) over and sprinkle with sesame seeds.



1. If possible, I suggest you use freshly ground Sichuan pepper rather than a shop bought one. Please refer to my previous post "Sichuan pepper and how to grind it" for instructions.
2. Since Sichuan style chilli oil (四川红油) is the key seasoning for this dish, I highly recommend you make it yourself. Please refer to my previous post "Make your own chilli oil" for instructions. To achieve a more authentic look for this dish, please only use the clear red oil (pour through a sieve to remove chilli flakes etc.).