Total Time
3hrs 40mins
Prep 20 mins
Cook 3 hrs 20 mins

This recipe is served in the Michelin-starred Fat Duck restaurant along with meat dishes. You might wonder about the addition of meat in this recipe, but as the chef Heston Blumenthal says: "You need meat in this dish because the onions cook while the liquid is reducing, and end up coated in a thick, syrupy liquid, which would not happen without the meaty content. This also guarantees that the puree is not too wet."


  1. Slice the onions into very thin rings.
  2. Place the rings in a pan and pour in cold water to cover.
  3. Bring to a boil and simmer for two minutes.
  4. Then drain and refresh under cold water.
  5. Place half the butter, the star anise and the blanched onions in a large pot over medium heat.
  6. Sweat for 10-15 minutes, stirring frequently.
  7. Add the two liters of water and chicken wings, then bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer.
  8. After about three hours, the liquid should have reduced down to a syrup.
  9. If it is reducing too quickly, add some more cold water and lower the heat.
  10. After three hours, if you are still left with some excess liquid, increase the heat and reduce until only a little remains.
  11. Leave to cool, then remove the star anise and the chicken and liquidise.
  12. Pass the resulting purée through a fine-mesh sieve or, for a more rustic finish, leave it as is.
  13. To serve, stir in cream to taste, whisk in the remaining butter and season with salt.
  14. It will take a lot of salt, but this is important because it balances out any bitter flavours.