The term bang-bang chicken or bon bon chicken was originally associated with a Sichuan dish of cold chicken meat served over lettuce and drizzled with a thick soy-sesame sauce. “Bang-bang” describes the sound of chicken meat being beaten by a stick in order to flatten it.
In America, however — at least, according to American food bloggers’ photos of bang bang chicken on Pinterest — bang bang chicken has deep-fried breaded bite-sized chicken fillets served with a spicy sauce.
I do intend to make my version of the Sichuan bang-bang chicken but, right now, here is the recipe for my version of the American bang bang chicken.
Bang Bang Chicken, American-style
- 1/3 cup Sriracha
- 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 3 chicken breast fillets
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground Sichuan peppercorns
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup tapioca (or corn or potato) starch
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- cooking oil for deep-frying
- toasted sesame seeds
- sliced scallions
- First, make the bang bang sauce by mixing together the Sriracha, mayonnaise, honey and salt, to taste.
- Cut the chicken breast fillets into bite-size pieces. Season with salt, Sichuan pepper, ginger and garlic powder.
- In a large bowl, stir the starch, flour and a generous pinch of salt with enough ICY water to make a thickish but still pourable batter.
- Heat enough cooking oil to reach a depth of three inches.
- Dip each piece of chicken in batter and fry until golden brown and crisp. Do this in batches if your frying pan is on the small side. It is important not to overcrowd the pan for the chicken to form crisp crusts.
- Arrange the cooked chicken pieces on a plate. Drizzle the sauce over them. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and scallions.
- Serve the bang bang chicken at once.