I learned a lot of fantastic chicken 65 recipes while travelling the UK, researching for my upcoming cookbook. Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough space in the book for all my favourite recipes and we decided not to include a chicken 65 recipe this time around. Who knows… perhaps there will be a book two. That would be great!
There are so many different recipes for chicken 65 but they are all quite similar. I like to serve it as a starter but it also makes a great snack. The spicy and crispy chicken pieces are so good.
An optional extra is to stir in red chilli sauce to finish it all off. I often make my own but any good store bought chilli sauce will do.
I heard so many stories about how chicken 65 got its name. One was that the original chicken 65 had sixty-fine ingredients in it. I have yet to find a recipe that calls for that many ingredients. A more believable explanation was that chicken 65 was always the 65th option on the menu at popular restaurants in India. Diners would simply look for the 65th item on the menu and know it would be amazing.
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- 1000g chicken breast
- 2 eggs - beaten
- 2 tablespoons garlic ginger paste
- 3 tablespoons cornflour
- 3 tablespoons rice flour
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 tablespoon cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 2 teaspoons chilli powder
- 1½ tablespoons tandoori masala
- 1 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- Rapeseed oil for deep frying
- 1 teaspoon black mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 20 curry leaves
- 3 green chillies sliced
- 12 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 x 4" piece of ginger - julienned
- 3 spring onions - roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 - 3 tablespoons chilli sauce of choice (optional)
- Slice the chicken breasts into small bite sized pieces at an angle as shown in the photo above.
- Mix all of the ingredients up to the black pepper into a paste and stir this evenly into the chicken pieces.
- Let this marinate for about 30 minutes or longer.
- When ready to deep fry, heat your oil in a large wok. The oil should be at least four inches deep.
- The oil is ready when a small piece of battered chicken bubbles immediately when you put it in.
- Fry the chicken in batches until the exterior is nice and crispy and the meat is about 85% cooked through. This should take about two - three minutes per batch.
- Place the finished chicken pieces on a wire rack to rest while you finish the dish.
- Empty the wok keeping about four tablespoons of the oil in the pan.
- Place over high heat and toss in the mustard seeds. When they begin to pop, add the cumin seeds, curry leaves and green chillies and fry for a further 30 seconds.
- Add the garlic and julienned ginger and fry until fragrant and soft. About a minute should do the job.
- Pour the chicken and spring onions in and stir well to coat. Fry it all over high heat until the chicken is completely cooked through. Squeeze the lemon juice over the top and add chilli sauce (if using).
- Give it all one last good stir and check for seasoning, adding a little more salt if needed.