Tuesday, August 5, 2014

1-2-3 Karaage! (Japanese Fried Chicken)

 I first discovered Karaage over ten years ago at a small rather (then) trendy restaurant in Brisbane’s fringe. It was love at first bite! Deliciously crunchy with a perfect balance of flavours, Karaage is normally served with a teppanyaki sauce, though I have always preferred it served simply with Kewpie Mayonnaise (Japanese mayo) (as you can see in the pic!)

Unfortunately, not all karaage is made equal and it is the simpler recipes that always knocked it out of the ball park – some places get a bit crazy. Once I had karaage served with Thousand Island Dressing (huh?) and another time it had Turmeric in it (again, huh?). That’s why this recipe will do well by you as it is simplicity at it’s best – 1, 2 3, Karaage! 1tbsp minced ginger, 2 tbsp cooking sake, 3 tbsp soy sauce.

As this recipe is deep fried, there is a little bit of mess involved, and a bit of time standing around waiting for the pieces to cook a few at a time – so not the best recipe if you’re in a rush. Remember, when deep frying food you don’t want to overcrowd the hot oil in the pot or it will take considerably longer to cook and may end up quite soggy. I like to keep at least 2-3 inches between items frying. This recipe does ask for the Karaage to be twice fried, this makes it crunchier, but if you only want to fry it once, just leave it in the oil until a deep golden colour is achieved.


What Will I Need?
500g chicken thigh, diced into large, bite sized pieces
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp cooking sake (or mirin)
1 tbsp minced ginger

1/2 cup cornflour
vegetable oil for deep frying

What Now?
1. In a freezer bag, or large bowl, marinate the chicken in the soy, sake and ginger for at least half an hour.

2. Add the cornflour to a large bowl, set aside.

3. Line two bowls with absorbent paper. Set aside.

4. Heal oil deep enough for frying over a medium high heat.

5. Transfer the chicken pieces to the cornflour and toss through until all chicken pieces are coated as well as possible.

6. Add 4-5 pieces of chicken at a time to the hot oil (more or less depending on the size of your pot/deep fryer. The more you add, the longer it takes to cook.)

7. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until just turning gold and remove with a metal slotted spoon, transferring to the first lined bowl. Continue with remaining chicken.

8. Repeat step 6 and 7, frying the chicken a second time for a further 2-3 minutes or until a deep golden colour is achieved. Transfer to the second lined bowl, and continue with remaining chicken.

9. Once all chicken is cooked, transfer to a serving bowl or platter and enjoy.