Nanban sauce is soy sauce based sweet and sour sauce with chilli.Marinating fried chicken and aubergine overnight makes it delicious cold the next day.It is suitable for summer or when you want to prepare a meal in advance, however, it is also very tasty as serving hot!
Plain short grain rice, white or brown, or Thai fragrant rice would go very well.
Nanban sauce is soy sauce based sweet and sour sauce with chilli. Marinating fried chicken and aubergine overnight makes it delicious cold the next day. It is suitable for summer or when you want to prepare a meal in advance, however, it is also very tasty as serving hot! Plain short grain rice, white or brown, or Thai fragrant rice would go very well.
Chicken breast x 2
Potato starch 5 tbsp
Sunflower oil to fill your wok or frying pan for 3 cm depth
Spring onion 2
Sea salt a little
Black pepper a little
Soy sauce 6 tbsp
Mirin or Sake 6 tbsp
Sugar 2 tbsp (Mirin is sweeter so you need less sugar. Sweetness is up to you!)
White wine vinegar 4 tbsp
Tobanjan-Chinese garlic chilli bean paste 1 tsp (You can use finely chopped or grated garlic and ginger and a little fresh chilli instead, if you don’t have the paste.)
Put all the ingredients for Nanban sauce in a saucepan and heat it up gently for 2~3 minutes once until the sugar gets dissolved.
Cut the chicken into bite size pieces and sprinkle them with a little salt and pepper to let them stand at room temperature.
Wash and cut the aubergine in half, length ways then cut each half into bite size pieces.
Heat the oil in a wok or frying pan to 180°C.
Wipe the aubergine with paper towel to make sure they are dry before frying them.
Fry the aubergine pieces for a minute for two until they are lightly brown and soft to squeeze with tongs.
Take them out of the oil to drain on some paper towels.
Put the potato starch in a shallow bowl then put some chicken pieces in the starch to cover them well.
Get rid of the excess starch by tapping them by the side of the bowl.
Fry them after the aubergine. It should be ideally around 170°C.
It will be ready cooked in 2~3 minutes until they are crispy light brown.
Drain the oil on the paper towels.
Pour the Nanban sauce into a serving shallow bowl then put the aubergine and the chicken pieces.
It is better to soak the fried aubergine and the chicken in the sauce soon after frying them and draining the excess oil.
Fresh herring is delicious just simply salt grilled. Fillet it yourself or ask a fish monger to do it for you. It is delicious to eat with grated radish and ginger together. You can drop some soy sauce or Ponzu on top.
I am very pleased that UNESCO has recognised the value in Japanese cuisine by giving it Cultural Heritage Status. The Japanese way of preparing food can be created wherever you are in the world. All you need is fresh ingredients, skills, creativity and appreciation. It’s a concept of enhancing the natural flavour for the palate and a feast for the eyes. When the creation is dressed in beautiful Japanese pottery, it looks even more delicious and the simple pottery looks even more fabulous.