Luke Mangan’s Crispy Salt & Pepper Popcorn Chicken

Packed full of flavour, these little chicken morsels make a terrific snack. 

Luke Mangan shares his recipe with Mum Central! Straight from his new book ‘Sharing Plates’ this crunchy, tasty chicken will be a new family favourite!

Crispy Salt & Pepper Popcorn Chicken

Serves four as a snack 
400 g (14 oz) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into
bite-sized pieces
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
1 free-range egg
125 g (4½ oz/1 cup) cornflour (cornstarch)
Handful Thai basil leaves
1 tablespoon Chinese five-spice

Soy & Shaoxing Marinade 
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon Chinese five-spice
½ teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons shaoxing rice wine
½ teaspoon ground white pepper
1⁄8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon sea salt
1⁄8 teaspoon white sugar

To marinate the chicken 

Combine the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chicken pieces, making sure to completely coat them. Cover and marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes, or up to 1 hour.

To fry the chicken 

Two-thirds fill a deep-fryer or large heavy-based saucepan with vegetable oil. Heat to 170°C (325ºF), or until a cube of bread dropped into the oil turns golden brown in 20 seconds.
Whisk the egg in a small bowl, and place the cornflour in a separate bowl.
Working in batches, dip the chicken pieces in the egg, then the cornflour, and place into the oil. Fry for 3–4 minutes, until golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel.
Drop the fresh basil leaves into the oil for a few seconds, then remove.

To serve the chicken 

Place the fried chicken in a serving dish. Sprinkle with the fried basil leaves and the five-spice powder. Toss to ensure all the chicken pieces are evenly coated.

Serve immediately, with mayonnaise.

sharing plates book cover sample
Credits: Recipe and Image from Sharing Plates by Luke Mangan (Murdoch Books)
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