Childhood chicken wings with sticky chilli dip

Childhood chicken wings with sticky chilli dip

Chinese Unchopped
20 mins
Cooking time
10 mins
Martin Poole

No matter how much I forget as I get older, I have a steel-trap memory for food. This ability to recall selective food experiences has been passed down to me from my parents – memories in the Pang family, it seems, always hold hands with our sense of smell and taste. One of these, a plate of crispy garlic chicken wings from the ‘aunty’ at the poolside café by our apartment block in Singapore, has remained in the minds of both my sisters and myself since we were served it some twenty-odd years ago. To this day I cannot figure out how she ever made something so simple taste just so good. Here is my best attempt.


Quantity Ingredient
8 chicken wings, (halved or kept whole depending on how you want to serve)
vegetable oil, for frying

The marinade

Quantity Ingredient
3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1/4 teaspoon chinese five-spice
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

The batter

Quantity Ingredient
1 egg white
50g cornflour
A pinch sea salt
A pinch ground black pepper
25ml cold water
1 tablespoon black sesame seeds

Sticky chilli dip

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon sriracha chilli sauce or korean chilli paste
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon chinkiang black rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame seeds


  1. Wash the chicken wings thoroughly, then dry them with a clean tea towel and put them in a bowl. Add the marinade ingredients and, using your hands, massage them into the meat. Cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge to marinate for at least 1 hour, or overnight for best results.
  2. Once the chicken wings have marinated, mix the batter ingredients together in a bowl, then add to the wings and mix together well until evenly coated.
  3. Mix all the dipping sauce ingredients together in a small bowl or ramekin.
  4. Half-fill a large pot, wok or deep-fryer with vegetable oil and heat to 160°C, or until the tip of a wooden chopstick or skewer starts to bubble (but not fizz) after 2–3 seconds in the oil.
  5. Carefully add the wings and deep-fry for 8–10 minutes, or until the wings are golden brown and fully cooked. Remove the wings from the oil and drain well on kitchen paper. Serve immediately, alongside the dipping sauce.


  • To check if the chicken wings are fully cooked, remove one from the oil and pierce it through the middle of the thickest part with a skewer or sharp knife – the meat should be white all the way through.
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