Marmite Chicken 妈蜜鸡

I’m not sure why, but recently I’ve been in a distinctly Marmite state of mind.

Perhaps its the riots and lockdowns talking, but I think we can all agree these are dark and polarising times. Indeed, seen from that perspective 2020 is turning out to be the most “Marmite” year of them all! Dividing more than it unites, this dark concoction of Brewer’s Yeast claims no middle-ground; making it the pantry poster-child of this “love it or loathe it” culture we seem to find ourselves living in. Alas I adore Marmite, but as a Year, it can go straight to the back of the shelf…but not before I drone on about one of my favourite recipes: Marmite Chicken!

Arguably one of the last ingredients you’d associate with Asian food, Marmite Chicken is a surprisingly popular dish in the Chinese restaurants of Malaysia. Robust, and un-apologetically marmity, this dish isn’t for the fainthearted – but then again neither is Marmite! Much like Horlicks Chicken, there is naturally an element of the novel in play here, but don’t let that put you off. Of course it goes without saying that non-Marmite lovers beware: this may not be the dish for you!

This surprisingly easy dish is, in fact, a triumph of crispy deep-fried chicken morsels, contrasted with, and smothered in, an addictive umami sauce. Balancing both sweet and salty, this certainly isn’t the dubious fusion hash you’d expect it to be. As with similar dishes, Marmite chicken is best plated on  some fresh lettuce, sliced cucumber, and even tomato – anything that will absorb that wonderfully sticky sauce!

Serve with: plain rice, mapo tofu and something “neutral” like Sichuan Cabbage, or egg foo young,

To discover other delicious Malaysian recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click here

To discover other delicious Chinese recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click here

Marmite Chicken 妈蜜鸡

Serves: 4 as part of a larger meal

Ingredients: 

  • 500 g chicken thighs, skinned and boned
  • 1/4 cup potato starch, rice flour, or cornflour
  • Oil for deep-frying
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
Marinade:
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1 tbsp shaoxing rice wine, or dry sherry (optional – add a tbsp. water instead)
  • 1 tbsp potato starch, rice flour, or cornflour
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 2 tsp cooking oil

Sauce:

  • 1 heaped tsp. Marmite
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Garnish:

  • Red Chili, sliced
  • Toasted sesame seeds
  • Cucumber, thinly sliced
  • Tomato, thinly sliced
  • Lettuce, torn into pieces

Method: 

  1. Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces, place in a mixing bowl.
  2. Add salt and white pepper. Mix in the egg yolk (keep the white for later). Add the potato starch. Mix together. Add the rice wine/water, and finally mix in the oil.
  3. Leave to marinate for a couple of hours, but 15 minutes will suffice
  4. Combine all the sauce ingredients in a small bowl
  5. Heat the oil in preparation of frying the chicken
  6. Loosen the reserved egg white slightly by beating it
  7. Dip the chicken pieces in the egg, then dredge in the potato starch
  8. Add to the oil and fry in batches till golden, then drain in a colander over some paper towels
  9. Place a wok on a high heat and add the hot water. Bring to a boil and then add in the sauce mixture
  10. Cook over a very high heat till the sauce thickens and becomes glossy
  11. Add the cooked chicken and toss until evenly coated and warmed through
  12. Serve on a bed of either lettuce, cucumber or tomato (or even all three!)
  13. Sprinkle over the chili and sesame seeds
  14. Serve immediately

Serve with: plain rice, mapo tofu and something “neutral” like Sichuan Cabbage, or egg foo young,

To discover other delicious Malaysian recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click here

To discover other delicious Chinese recipes from The Muddled Pantry, please click here

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