Karaage (Japanese Fried Chicken)
1 clove garlic, finely grated
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
3 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons sake
1 tablespoon mirin
⅛ teaspoon sesame oil
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pinch cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon white sugar
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1 ¼ pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 cup potato starch
1 quart canola oil, or as needed
Mix garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sake, mirin, sesame oil, black pepper, cayenne, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl.
Place chicken in the marinade and mix until thoroughly and evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 10 hours.
Set up your dredging station: Place a wire rack over a foil-lined baking sheet. Add potato starch to a wide, shallow bowl.
Remove chicken from the refrigerator. Stir to coat with marinade. Toss 2 or 3 pieces at a time in the potato starch until evenly coated. Shake off any excess starch and place chicken on the wire rack. Repeat to dredge remaining pieces.
Tap the rack on the baking sheet to remove any loose chunks of starch, then transfer the baking sheet and rack of chicken to the refrigerator for 15 to 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a deep fryer to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Without crowding, lower chicken carefully into the hot oil in batches. Fry, tossing occasionally, until cooked through and the outside is crunchy and browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Repeat with remaining chicken.
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