Recipe – Korean Fried Chicken Bao Buns with Pickled Courgette

Food, Recipes

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As a self-confessed bao bun addict, I was beside myself with excitement when M&S started selling their ready-made baos. Just over a minute in the microwave and you have perfect fluffy buns ready to be stuffed with whichever glutinous filling you set your little heart on.

If your creative juices aren’t flowing then this crisp, sticky fried chicken is not only super easy to make, its also incredibly tasty.

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Ingredients

For the chicken
  • 6 chicken thigh fillets (skin removed)
  • 1 thumb size piece of ginger, grated
  • 100g cornflour
  • Vegetable oil
For the sauce
  • 3 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp kimchi paste (Korean chilli paste)
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tsp finely chopped or grated garlic (roughly 2/3 cloves)
  • 1 thumb-size piece of ginger, grated
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
For the pickled courgettes
  • 1 medium-sized courgette
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 30ml rice wine vinegar
  • 50ml boiling water
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • Pinch of salt
Extras
  • Pack of 6 bao buns (Follow instructions on the pack to prep)
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced lengthways
  • Half a cucumber, finely sliced lengthways
  • 1 fresh red chilli, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp Sriracha sauce (or a tsp of kimchi paste)
  • Chopped peanuts

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Method

1.Start with your courgette pickle. Peel your courgette into ribbons and place to one side. In a small mixing bowl add the ground turmeric, salt, sugar and boiling water. Stir until the sugar has dissolved completely. Once dissolved add the rice wine vinegar and mix again. Now add the courgette ribbons and stir to cover. Place in the fridge until ready to serve.

2.Grab a small saucepan and place on a medium/low heat. Add all of the ingredients that you need for your sauce and stir until sticky and simmering gently. Take your sauce off the heat and place the pan to one side.

3.Cut the chicken thigh fillets in half and remove any fatty excess. Then season with salt, pepper and the grated ginger. Pour the cornflour onto a plate and one by one toss the chicken thighs in the flour until completely coated. Shake off any excess.

4.Heat about 2-3cm of vegetable oil in a wide-based frying pan. Use a small piece of fat (removed from the chicken) to check when the oil is hot. If the oil starts to bubble up around it then you are ready to cook your chicken. Fry the chicken thighs on each side for around 4 minutes until golden. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan. I recommend frying in batches.

5.Remove the thighs from the oil once cooked and place onto some kitchen paper to cool for a few minutes – Leaving the oil on the heat. Then place the chicken back into the hot oil and fry until extra crisp. Again, removing and placing onto kitchen paper to cool.

6.Reheat the sauce on low until warm and sticky. Add the fried chicken to the sauce and stir gently until evenly coated. Sprinkle a generous tbsp of sesame seeds in the pan and shake to cover.

7.Now time to build your baos! Mix the mayo and tsp of Sriracha together and put a dollop in each bao followed by a few sticks of spring onion and cucumber. Now for the main event, grab a piece of your sticky fried chicken to nestle in there and finally top your bao with toppings of your choice. Chopped peanuts and fresh chilli are my favourites.

8.Serve your beautiful baos with a nice little heap of courgette pickle and a cold beer. Well, that last bit is up to you…

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Recipe – The Ultimate Hangover Cure Sandwich

Recipes

Picture the scene. Hair matted, the ends sticky and tangled with some sort of sugary cocktail, I’m wearing last nights skirt around my waist and a manky old Rolling stones top, there is an untouched glass of water on my bedside table and a crumpled pile of receipts. It’s the hangover from hell. It’s the type of hangover that only a grease fuelled takeaway will solve. Well, that, or my breakfast sandwich. I use the word ‘my’ loosely because I have definitely kind of stole the basis of this idea from Chrissy Teigen’s Cravings recipe book. We are essentially the same person though so it’s fine.

This is the kind of breakfast sandwich that when you bite into it you end up with egg yolk and sriracha sauce all down your My Little Pony pajamas but just don’t give a damn. I guarantee you it will 100% sort your hangover though and you’ll be back to your fine self before you know it.

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Ingredients

For the patties:

  • 500g Pork mince
  • 2 tsp ground sage
  • 2 grated garlic cloves
  • 1½ tsp of sea salt
  • 1½ tsp of ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • ½ grated white onion

For the hashbrowns:

  • 1 large white potato (Think big jacket potato size)
  • Small knob of melted butter (About 50g)
  • ½ tsp of sea salt
  • ½ tsp of ground black pepper
  • Drizzle of vegetable oil for cooking

To finish off the sandwiches:

  • English Muffins x 4
  • American cheese slices
  • A generous squirt of Sriracha (optional)
  • Eggs

Method:

  1. Grab a bowl large enough to make your pork patties in. Add all of the ingredients for your patties and mix until incorporated. Add a drizzle of vegetable oil to help this process along. Once you are happy the ingredients are incorporated form the mix into approx 6-8 patties (depending on how big you want them)
  2. Put your patties to one side and begin grating your potato into a separate bowl. Don’t bother peeling. This is a no-nonsense recipe. Add the melted butter and seasoning to your grated potato and mix.
  3. Heat two frying pans to medium-high and add a touch of oil to each. Once the oil is sizzling, add your patties to one pan and press down slightly. These will take approx 4 minutes on each side to cook. Flip them so that you get that nice golden brown finish. Add your grated potato to the other pan and spread it out slightly so that it covers the bottom of the pan evenly. This is going to take about the same time as the patties, 4 minutes each side.
  4. Whilst everything is cooking, lightly toast your muffins and yes, we want our muffins buttered. Drizzle a bit of sriracha over the bottom of the muffins and add a slice of the American cheese to each.
  5. Remove your patties from the heat and start stacking them on your muffins. Use that same pan to fry up a few eggs, 1 for each sandwich. Whilst your eggs are sizzling away cut a few pieces of your giant hashbrown and layer it on top of your pork patties. Finally, top off with the fried egg and another squirt of sriracha.

Best served with: A large glass of cold water and Sex and the City re-runs. Enjoy hot and swiftly followed by a power nap.