Secret recipes with Julie Tran

Julie Tran's column. This week, it's Crispy Chicken Wings.
Julie Tran's column. This week, it's Crispy Chicken Wings.


THE sound of my childhood will always be a kitchen exhaust fan going into overdrive.

As soon as the school bags hit the floor, Mum was standing in the hallway, asking what we'd like as an afternoon snack.

Of course, the options were endless, egg noodles, spaghetti — but one dish reigned supreme — Mum's succulent chicken wings.

Her fried chicken wings weren't like the pieces from a fast-food chain.

Her tasty poultry was a perfect combination with a brown, crispy coat covering juicy, tender meat.

This made-to-measure dish came out when it was that beautiful hour between Ship to Shore and Danger Mouse on the ABC.

My older sister, younger brother and I all sat with our eyes glued to the television, eating this scrumptious meal.

Like shrimp to Bubba in the movie Forrest Gump, so is chicken to the Chinese community.

You can steam it, you can fry it, you can marinate it.

The list is endless.

Chicken is a commodity that's used for every body part, heck even the feet don't get spared.

The most popular chicken breeds found in the Chinese kitchen are cochin and lagshen.

Moist toes and bright eyes are a sign of a prized catch.

So, as we pass on the generational torch, was it possible to replicate this family recipe?

Yes, it was.

The secret as with many precious things in life is simplicity.

All you need is brown sugar, chicken powder and, most importantly, potato starch to ensure that music to your ears "crunch" coating.

When cooking this meal, the key is making sure the stove is set on the highest heat and letting the marinated wings soak up the flavour.

While in the oiled filled wok, continually turn the wings for 10 minutes until you see the golden perfection.

Keen to try this crowd-pleaser?

Just head to for a step-by-step video instructional on how to make Mum's fried chicken wings.

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