Malaysian Fried Chicken

Malaysian Fried Chicken

Malaysian Fried Chicken

All I can say about this Malaysian Fried Chicken is that it’s lip-smacking, finger-licking good! It is served in all ‘mamak’ stalls in Malaysia, which are open until the wee hours of the morning – perfect for a late supper after a big night out at a club. It’s great as an appetiser, but it’s most often served with coconut rice, or as part of nasi lemak.

Serves 4


  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 5 small red Asian shallots, halved and skin removed
  • 4 cm (1 ½ inch) piece ginger, coarsely chopped
  • 2 lemongrass stems, pale part only, coarsely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil, if needed
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 Tbsp chilli powder
  • 3 tsp curry powder
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp whole aniseeds
  • ½ tsp ground coriander
  • 3 Tbsp plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 3 tsp caster (super-fine) sugar
  • 4 chicken marylands (leg quarters), skin on, each cut into 3 pieces
  • Canola or vegetable oil, for deep-frying

To serve

  • sea salt
  • lime juice
  • soy sauce


  • Ask your butcher to cut the chicken marylands into pieces for you.
  • If preparing in advance, place spice-coated chicken in the refrigerator to marinate. Remove from fridge 45 mins before cooking to bring to room temperature.


  1. Put the garlic, shallot, ginger and lemongrass in a food processor and process to a fine paste, adding canola oil if required to reach a paste consistency. Add lime juice, soy sauce and egg and pulse to combine.
  2. Combine the spices, flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl, then stir in the garlic mixture until smooth. Add the chicken pieces and mix until each piece is well coated in the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate at room temperature for 1 hour.
  3. Heat the oil in a deep-fryer or saucepan to 180°C (350°F), or until a cube of bread dropped in the oil browns in 15 seconds. Working in batches of three pieces at a time (or more, depending on the size of your fryer or pan), carefully ease the chicken into the oil and cook for 7 – 9 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown (smaller pieces will cook in 7 minutes, while larger pieces will need an extra minute or two). Drain well on a plate lined with paper towel. Cover with foil to keep warm while you cook the remaining pieces.
  4. Sprinkle with extra sea salt and serve with soy sauce or a squeeze of lime juice.

As seen in my fourth book More Please! — recipe by Manu Feildel, photography by Rob Palmer, published by Murdoch Books Australia.


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