Tatsuta age is a bold tasty variation of Karaage (Japanese fried chicken). My recipe for Karaage/Tatsuta Age today is very simple. Moreover, it’s gluten-free and absolutely a great choice for starting off parties or as a savory snack!
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🙋♀️ What are Tatsutaage & Karaage?
Tatsuta-age (竜田揚げ) gets its name from the reddish soy sauce color during frying and the white starch resembling the Tatsuta River with autumn leaves.
Karaage (唐揚げ) refers to the cooking technique where food is deep-fried to perfection.
Tatsutaage vs. Karaage: Tatsuta-age is a specific type of karaage always marinated and coated in potato starch. On the flip side, karaage can also be marinated and coated in potato starch but isn’t always.
While there are numerous karaage variations like Tofu Karaage, Squid Karaage (Ika Geso Karaage), or Chicken Wing Karaage (Teba Karaage), Chicken Karaage (Tori no Karaage) stands out as the most popular.
❤️ Why This Recipe Works?
- Juicy & crunchy with full of Japanese flavors: juicy and tender inside while crispy and crunchy outside. This chicken is also packed of Japanese flavors. Take a break from KFC from now on.
- Versatile: perfect as a side dish with rice, a starter or food along with beer
- Gluten-Free: The batter used for coating the chicken combines potato starch and rice flour. Still crispy but totally gluten-free.
More Chicken Recipes for Asian foodies:
Boneless Chicken Thighs: Opt for boneless chicken thighs as they retain their juiciness when cooked. You can substitute chicken breast.
Potato Starch and Rice Flour: These two ingredients create a perfectly crispy and crunchy coating for the Karaage, while keeping it gluten-free.
Soy Sauce: All-purpose soy sauce works well, but for an authentic flavor, I recommend to use Japanese soy sauce.
Sake and Mirin: These Japanese seasonings enhance the sweet flavor and reduce chicken odor. You can substitute these ingredient with cooking wine.
Egg: Adding an egg to the mixture helps ensure the fried chicken turns out incredibly juicy.
Ginger and Sesame Oil: essential aromatics
Salt, Pepper, and Sugar
- Cut the chicken thighs into bite-sized pieces, ensuring they are evenly sized.
- Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Mix them well with hands.
- Combine chicken with soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar, ginger, and sesame oil together. Allow the chicken to marinate for 20-30 minutes.
- Discard the marinade liquid. Add one egg to the chicken and massage it gently to ensure the pieces are well-coated with the egg.
- Add potato starch and rice flour to the chicken, and once again, massage it to ensure the batter covers each piece thoroughly.
- Double fry the chicken: First, fry it at medium-low heat for 7-8 minutes until the chicken turns a light golden color.
- Let the chicken rest for a few minutes. Then, fry it again at medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes or until the chicken turns golden and crispy.
- Serve the Tori Karaage with a lemon wedge and a side of salad.
🌟 Expert Tips
Choose skin-on boneless chicken thighs:
The skin-on thighs are ideal for Karaage as they contribute to a flavorful and crispy result. They are the best part to use for this dish.
What to seve with Chicken Karaage:
- A touch of citrus delight: Squeezing some lemon juice over the chicken helps balance out the richness and adds a refreshing tang.
- Dipping Sauce: Japanese mayo, Japanese aurora sauce or ponzu sauce.
- Rice: my microwaved Jasmine rice, Instant Pot sticky rice, or coconut basmati rice are some good ideas.
- Noodles: like Lao Gan Ma / chili oil noodles.
- Bread: why not serve Karaage as the filling for a Vietnamese Banh Mi Sandwich or as a twist addition to a Banh Mi Charcuterie Board?
If you’ve tried this recipe or any others from my blog, please share your creations with me on Instagram by tagging #savour_thepho or mentioning me in your stories with @savour_thepho . I would be thrilled to see what you’ve made and it would definitely brighten my day! Don’t forget to stay in touch with me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube 🥰.
Chicken Tatsuta Age / Karaage (Japanese Fried Chicken)
- 1.3 pound boneless, skin-on chicken thighs (600g)
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper powder
- 2 tbsp Japanese soy sauce
- 1 tbsp Mirin
- 2 tbsp sake rice wine
- ½ tsp sugar
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp finely minced fresh ginger
- ⅓ cup potato starch (60g)
- ⅓ cup rice flour (60g)
- 1 Lemon (for serving)
- Begin by cutting the chicken thighs into evenly sized bite-sized pieces.
- Massage the chicken with salt and pepper to season it.
- In a bowl, marinate the chicken with soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar, ginger, and sesame oil. Allow it to marinate for 20-30 minutes.
- Discard the marinade liquid, then add one egg to the chicken and gently massage it to ensure the pieces are well-coated.
- Add potato starch and rice flour to the chicken, massaging it lightly to ensure each piece is evenly coated. Shake off any excess flour.
- Double fry the chicken. Start by frying it at medium-low heat for 7-8 minutes until it achieves a light golden color.
- Allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes, then fry it again at medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes until it becomes golden and crispy.
- Serve the fried chicken with a lemon wedge and a side of salad.
- Opt for skin-on boneless chicken thighs – they ensure a flavorful and crispy Tori Karaage.
- Serve with a lemon wedge to balance the richness and add a refreshing tang.
- Optionally, enjoy with Japanese Mayo, Japanese aurora sauce or Ponzu sauce for extra delight.