There's a lovely bite to these chicken sambos.


Serves: 4

  • 4 chicken thighs

Dry rub ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp salt
  • ½ tsp mustard powder
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp white pepper
  • 100g plain flour

For the batter:

  • 125ml milk
  • 1 tbsp hot sauce
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 50g flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Sunflower oil, for frying

For the burger sauce:

  • 4 tbsp mayonnaise
  • Squeeze lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp hot sauce
  • 2 tsp ketchup
  • Tabasco to taste
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

For the slaw:

  • Quarter small white cabbage, thinly shredded
  • 3 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 4 tbsp mayonnaise
  • Squeeze lemon juice

To serve:

  • 2 gherkins, sliced
  • 4 brioche buns, toasted
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Chilli crisp oil

  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 12 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 small piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • 450ml vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

For the spice mix:

  • 2 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 2 tbsp red chilli flakes
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar


  1. In a large bowl combine the ingredients for the rub, add the chicken and toss until evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight.
  2. Add enough oil to a pan to come halfway up and heat to 180°C/350°f. Line a plate with kitchen paper and set aside.
  3. In a shallow dish, season the flour with sea salt and set aside.
  4. In a bowl, make the batter. Mix the flour with the paprika and cayenne. slowly incorporate the milk until combined and smoot. Season with hot sauce, salt and pepper.
  5. Add the chicken pieces into the flour mixture, shaking off excess. Next, dip the flour-coated chicken in the batter. Return chicken to flour mixture and roll to coat evenly. Shake again.
  6. Working in batches, lower the chicken pieces into the hot oil and fry for 4-5 minutes each side until crisp and golden. Using a slotted spoon remove the chicken pieces to the paper lined plate.
  7. While the chicken is cooking combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, hot sauce, ketchup, tabasco, paprika and worcestershire sauce in a small bowl. In a separate bowl toss together the cabbage, spring onion, mayonnaise and lemon juice, use your hands to massage the liquids into the cabbage and season to taste.
  8. Heat brioche buns on a griddle pan over a high heat for a minute or until they have nice charred marks on the cut side.
  9. To assemble: Place some of the coleslaw on the base of the bun followed by the crispy chicken, gherkins, sauce and the top of the bun.

Chilli crisp oil

  1. Place the shallots, garlic, ginger in a medium saucepan and bring to a steady simmer over a medium heat. Stir regularly and cook gently for 20 minutes or so until the shallots and garlic are crisp.
  2. Place all the ingredients for the numbing spice mix, apart from the sugar, in a dry frying pan over a medium high heat and cook until toasted and aromatic. Place in a pestle and mortar or coffee grinder with the sugar and bash to a fine powder.
  3. Combine the spice mix, soy sauce and sugar in a bowl until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the oil mix through a fine mesh sieve over the contents of the bowl and allow the crispy shallots, garlic and ginger to cool completely before adding to the oil and mixing through.
  4. Transfer to jars and cover with a lid once completely cool. The mix will last for at least one month and keep in the fridge once opened.