Oct 21, 2022

Shaoxing Drunken Shrimp 紹興醉蝦

If you're looking for a classic Chinese cold dish that's not too hard to make, can be prepared some time ahead, and carries a wow effect when presenting on the table, this is it - Shaoxing drunken shrimp.  

Shaoxing drunken shrimp 紹興醉蝦 - 

Shaoxing drunken shrimp


  • 8 to 10 whole shrimp with shells
  • 1 wedge lemon
  • 200ml aged Shaoxing wine
  • 200ml water
  • 1 small piece angelica 當歸
  • 3 slices astragalus root 黃耆
  • 1 teaspoon goji berries 枸杞
  • 1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt



Take a medium pot, add 200ml of water along with angelica, astragalus root, and goji berries. Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer for couple minutes. After that, add 1/4 teaspoon of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Stir and make sure all the sugar has been fully dissolved. 

Cold marinade for Shaoxing drunken shrimp

Switch-off the heat. Pour in 200ml of aged Shaoxing wine. Note that the ratio for Shaoxing and water is the same here. Pour the whole thing to a wide container and transfer to the fridge. Wait till the temperature drops, icy cold is the best.

Clean the shrimp by trimming the pointy tip, long legs, and antennae. You can use a scissor to cut them to shorter length. Use a toothpick to devein the shrimp. Even with shells on, you can still find the gap around the second segment, like around middle but closer to the head area. That's where you can poke in and devein the shrimp.

Shrimp with the shell preparation

Prepare another pot, pour in some water and bring to a boil. Add the prepped shrimp along with one lemon wedge. I already have half squeezed lemon sitting in the fridge, so I just grabbed that instead.

Bring the whole thing to a boil again then turn-off the heat right away. Let the shrimp rest in hot water for couple more minutes. 

Cooking shrimp with lemon

Scoop out the shrimp and transfer to the Shaoxing flavored juice. Back to the fridge again overnight.

Adding cooked shrimp to Shaoxing marinade

When ready to serve, pick out the shrimp and plate. Scoop some cold juice over along with some soaked goji berries.

Shaoxing drunken shrimp

Don't leave the shrimp in Shaoxing juice longer than overnight. Otherwise the flavor can be too strong. 

Shaoxing drunken shrimp

One way to work around it, once the marinating time is long enough, you can pour out the Shaoxing juice. This will help preventing the shrimp from sucking in any more flavors. Reassemble the shrimp and juice back together right before serving.  

Other recipes using Shaoxing wine:

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