Mains Protein Recipes

Yan Su Ji

Allegedly the inspiration behind popcorn chicken, this salty delight originates in the festive night markets of Taiwan. Bite-sized morsels of chicken are coated in flour and deep-fried, and usually served with salt and pepper, with the option of chillies and fried basil.

Recipe by Bio Cheung, executive chef at Check-In Taipei.

*Featured in Crave’s Issue 86, August 2017


12 hours; 20 minutes

(Serves 2)

200g chicken thigh meat, chopped into nuggets

1 tsp five-spice powder
1 tbsp Taiwanese condensed soy sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp ground white pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced

60g sweet potato starch
50g plain flour
200ml water

Yuzu Mayonnaise
2 egg yolks
50g sugar
5g salt
10ml lemon juice
400ml canola oil
200g honey yuzu tea jam


1. Marinate the chicken

  • In a bowl, combine the marinade ingredients, add the chicken and marinate overnight.

2. Prepare chicken for deep-frying

  • In one bowl, prepare the sweet potato starch. In another, combine the plain flour and water. Dip the marinated chicken nuggets first in the flour-water mixture, then in the sweet potato starch. Deep-fry for six minutes until golden.

3. Make yuzu mayonnaise

  • Put egg yolks, sugar, salt and lemon juice into a food processor. On the lowest setting, slowly add the canola oil, and blend. The mayonnaise should form after five to six minutes. Add the honey yuzu tea jam, and blend for 10 to 15 seconds.

4. Serve

  • Arrange the fried chicken on a plate, with the yuzu mayonnaise on the side.

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