Fried chicken: it’s a definite weakness of mine! But don’t head to KFC just yet. This super-speedy version not only tastes way better (soz, Colonel), but means you can get your weeknight fix of crunch and Thai flavours in just 15 minutes, whenever the mood strikes. Serve with some spicy or sweet sauce and you’ve just arrived in food heaven.
Fill a saucepan or wok to about one-third capacity with the vegetable oil. Heat over high heat.
Meanwhile, use a mortar and pestle to lightly pound the garlic. Remove and discard the garlic skins. Add the peppercorns and salt to the mortar and pound to a rough paste. Transfer the paste to a large bowl and add in the chicken and fish sauce. Stir until well combined.
Prepare the batter by mixing 1 cup of the tempura flour and sugar with 1 cup of water. Place the remaining 1 cup of tempura flour in a large snaplock bag or container with a lid.
Check your oil temperature – it will be hot enough to fry at 165C/325F or when a wooden spoon dipped into the oil forms small bubbles. When the oil is hot, place the chicken in the tempura batter, then lightly drain each piece before transferring to the bag or container of flour. Toss until well combined. Dust off the excess flour and carefully place into the hot oil. Cook for 8 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Transfer to a tray lined with kitchen paper to drain.
To serve, transfer the fried chicken to a serving plate. Serve with your choice of dipping sauce.