Everyone has a dish that takes them back to their childhood. Mine way my mum’s friend whole chicken with garlic and white peppers. My mum was not around much when I was little before I moved to Bahrain to be with her, so I do not have many memory of her when I was still in Thailand.
Most memories of my mum is in the kitchen in her restaurant in Bahrain she was always cooking wonderful food, I remember thinking what a great cook she was and I hope I can cook as good as her one day.
Chicken with Garlic and white pepper was one of the dishes on the menu in her restaurant, a very popular one of that. What she would do is take a lot of garlic and I do mean a lot of garlic about 1 bulb per chicken if not more sometime. I think my love for garlic stem from this dish. She would peel the outer skins from the garlic and break it in to cloves but not peeling the rest of the skins off. In it would go to the pestle mortar and just pound it till the garlic are all crush but have not turn in to paste, a little bit like if you would have finely sliced it. In goes a generous amount of fish sauce, this dish was originally to be had as a snack when you are drinking so it should be a bit salty. Add a tea spoon of white pepper. Then she would cut a whole chicken in to small potions about 8-10 pieces depending on the size of the chicken. Place the chicken and the garlic mix in to a bowl and give it a good mix massage it well, leave to marinate for 1 hour or overnight if you can. Remove from the fridge and let the chicken get to room temperature and in it goes to this huge wok that she use for deep – frying. She then moves it around the pan to loosen up all the garlic and it will float to the top. The garlic will turn crispy first and she would then remove it with slotting spoon and drain it on kitchen paper. The rest of the chicken should take about 10-15 minutes to cook. What you’ll have at the end is this golden crispy chicken that is still moist inside because she has cooked it on high heat. She then tops it off with all of the crispy garlic, believe me the garlic does not taste anything like garlic or smell like garlic. It has turned it to this delicious slightly salty crunchy crisp. Customer liked the garlic so much we ended up putting it on the menu
That was my childhood dish. Now that I am a mummy! I have created my own fried chicken dish for my girls. I used to cook this dish for Marisa when she was about 8 years old, she is now 24 and she still asked me to cook it every time she comes to visit. My youngest Emma- Jane who is now 6 has started to love it too.
Happy Thai Mother’s Day.
Mummy’s chicken wings
You will need:
10, chicken wings (about 700-800g)
1tsp, garlic oil taking more of the garlic then the oil (page 35)
1tsp, chilli flake
2tbsp, oyster sauce
1tbsp, soy sauce
1/2tbsp, dark soy sauce
1Lt, vegetable oil for frying
2, spring onion – sliced finely for garnishing
Heat up the vegetable oil in a wok or saucepan. If you only own one wok it’s best to keep it for later when you need it to mix your sauce.
Cut the chicken wings into 2 or 3 pieces, depending on whether you want to use the small wing section.
Test whether the oil is hot enough by putting a small piece of bread in – it should pop up straight away.
Drop in the chicken wings and cook until golden and crispy. This should take around 10-15 minutes depending on the heat.
Once cooked remove the chicken and drain off excess oil on kitchen paper.
To make the sauce, put the rest of the ingredients in a wok or frying pan. Do not put the heat on. Confused? Just stay with me on this! Mix the sauce up and taste until it’s to your liking.
Now turn the heat on medium. When your sauce is hot, add the chicken and toss until they are all coated in sauce. Add the spring onion at the last moment and serve immediately. I guarantee the finger-licking moreishness of this dish.
Take care when deep frying. Don’t overfill the pan/wok with oil because levels will rise when the chicken goes in.
Make sure you cook it until really crispy and golden.
And finally- why not mix up the sauce beforehand in a bowl, I hear you ask. Well, you can but this just makes more washing up….and why would you want to do that?