Ben’s Spicy Fried Chicken

Ben’s Spicy Fried Chicken

Ben’s Spicy Fried Chicken excerpted from Jeremy Pang’s School of Wok. Photography by Kris Kirkham.

Jeremy Pang's School of Wok

Bringing together the best Asian flavours from across the continent, this book is a combination of quick-fire, easy meals that take as little as 15 minutes to cook. From lavish suppers for lavish weekend suppers to family feasts with a bit more flair, Jeremy Pang’s School of Wok contains the tips and tricks you need to make the world of Asian cooking easily accessible so you never have to resort to a fakeaway ever again.

Most recipes in the book utilize the ‘wok clock’ technique, where the ingredients are laid out in a clock formation in the order they will be cooked for complete simplicity. Wok Wednesdays and Flavor Fridays, all seen on the School of Wok Youtube channel, are also featured.

Recipes include:

  • Black Pepper Hong Kong Beef
  • BBQ Pork Bao
  • Vegan Pad Thai
  • Pork and Prawn Wontons in Homemade Sichuan Chilli Oil
  • Sweet and Sour Crispy Cauliflower
  • Coming from three generations of Chinese cooks, chef, author and TV presenter

Jeremy Pang decided to follow his heart and bring the world of Asian cuisine to fellow food enthusiasts and establish School of Wok in London, a culinary school specializing in teaching Eastern cuisine to students in the comfort of their own homes.

Jeremy Pang’s School of Wok is available at and

Ben’s Spicy Fried Chicken 

Prep: 15 Mins, plus soaking | Cook: 18 Mins | Serves 2–3

One of our business partners, Ben, has been wanting to have a face-to-face meeting for over a year now just so that he can get his well-deserved fix of spicy fried chicken. Unfortunately, the closest he’s managed to get is his local chicken shop. Deep-fried chicken is the epitome of comfort food and the Indonesians have perfected it. Drop the ketchup and replace it with this spicy marinade, topped off with the salty chilli oil just to make you drool that little bit more. 

To make the spice paste, soak the dried red chillies in hot water for 10 minutes, then drain and finely chop. Pound with all the remaining spice paste ingredients using a pestle and mortar or blend together in a food processor until you have
a smooth paste.

Place the chicken pieces into a large mixing bowl and massage the paste into the meat to fully coat. Just before cooking, coat the chicken with cornflour, ensuring that each piece is evenly dusted with a thin layer of flour completely covering the skin. 

Deep-fry the coated chicken in vegetable oil at 180°C (350°F) for 1 minute (see page 21), then reduce the heat to medium-low, so that the oil is just simmering. Continue to cook for 10–15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the pieces. 

While your chicken is cooking, heat a heavy-based wok or saucepan over a medium heat. Once smoking hot, add all the chilli oil ingredients and stir-fry for 5–6 minutes until the chillies have softened slightly. Tip into a ramekin or small bowl to serve.

When the chicken is cooked through, increase the heat to medium-high and fry for a further 2 minutes for a really crispy skin. The chicken is ready when the pieces begin to float freely to the top of the oil. Transfer the chicken to a plate lined with kitchen paper, then serve with the chilli oil to drizzle over or dip.

3 whole chicken legs, with skin and bone, thighs and drumsticks separated

8–10 tablespoons cornflour 

vegetable oil

Spice paste

10 dried chillies

1 teaspoon ground cumin 

1 teaspoon ground coriander 

½ tablespoon curry powder

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

½ tablespoon fennel seeds

½ red onion, finely chopped

4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 thumb-sized piece of galangal or ginger, peeled and finely chopped

2 lemon grass stalks, trimmed, bruised and finely chopped

1 teaspoon salt

Chilli oil

5 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 red onion, finely chopped

5 garlic cloves, finely chopped

5 large green chillies, finely chopped

5 large red chillies, finely chopped

handful of coriander stalks, finely chopped

1 teaspoon salt

Recipe reprinted with permission from Hamlyn.

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