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[Recipe] Small Japanese Goodies: Tori no Karaage 鶏のから揚げ

karaage japan food


One of the best known and tried "small" Japanese delicacies. Easy to prepare Tori no Karaage 鶏のから揚げ, or just Karaage as they are often called, are a delicious and simple dish ...... not to be missed. Simple preparation, with ingredients (albeit some typically Japanese) easily available at ethnic markets or shops, now common in our cities, or at large supermarkets that offer ethnic products.

It is a recipe that does not require particular manual skills, therefore easy to prepare, the marinating takes a little longer, otherwise it is quick and immediate.


Tori no Karaage




Chicken thighs           1 - 2 Leeks                  Salt, Pepper (optional)

Soy Sauce                          Mirin                           

Potato Starch            Sake for Cooking             Garlic (optional)

Fry oil


Debone the thighs (or have them already deboned by your butcher), adjust according to the size of the pieces for the quantities. With 1 thigh you get 2 Karaage, so calculate based on your guests. Once cut, place them in a bulle, or container of your choice.

Tori no Karaage 2

Add 3 tablespoons (also adjust according to the quantity of chicken) of soy sauce, two of sake for cooking and 1 of mirin (it is a sort of cooking wine with a sweetish taste).
Add the leek that you have previously cut into rounds. The marinade of the original recipe  includes garlic, in which the cloves are cut into rounds and combined to give a more intense flavour. If you don't like the taste of garlic or if you're cooking for people who don't like it, you can skip this part as well.

Once the marinade is prepared, pour it over our chicken pieces, turn them so that they all take the liquid well and let it rest in the fridge for at least 1-2 hours. The longer it rests, the more the meat absorbs the flavors and makes it tastier.

Tori no Karaage 3


Heat the oil for frying. When the chicken is well marinated we prepare it for the flouring.
Combine the flour and potato starch in equal parts (it gives it an extra touch of crunch), if you want an extra pinch of taste add a little salt and pepper, but go easy because the soy sauce, mirin and the sake is already decidedly right.

For the flouring, little trick, use a freezer bag, put the flour and insert the chicken pieces so your hands and the kitchen will be clean.
When you pull up the chicken pieces, make sure that the leek pieces don't remain there but don't drain them too much so as not to lose the flavor of the marinade which gives it a more decisive aroma and taste.

Tori no Karaage 4


When the oil is at temperature we can begin our frying. Little home trick to know if the oil is ready, in case you don't have a frying thermometer. Throwing away a small piece of meat, if it reaches the bottom and remains there, it means that the temperature is lower than 150°C, therefore it is not good for frying; if the temperature between 150/160°C and 180°C rises to halfway, it is the ideal temperature for frying. If on the other hand it remains on the surface and immediately begins to fry the oil temperature is higher than 180°C  and it is too high a temperature to cook.

Throw the floured morsels into the oil a little at a time to prevent the frying oil temperature from dropping, turn them well until you get a nice crunchy brown colour. Serve them as you like, possibly with accompanying sauces that you like, but I assure you that even so natural they are phenomenal.

Continue to follow our recipes, the flavors from the Rising Sun that you have tried on your travels and that you may want to try again at home.

Recipe, Karaage, Mauro Piacentini

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