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Soi Polo Chicken Thighs

Photo: Oxmoor House
Yield Serves 4
"There is a restaurant on the outskirts of Bangkok called Soi Polo. When I was there taping my TV show, I went to this restaurant three times for this dish. Fried garlic, fried shallots, and spice-infused chicken made it impossible to stay away! Seems others agree with me. The restaurant has become world famous for this chicken. Here’s my version for you." —Todd English


  • 1 cup soy sauce or tamari
  • 3 tablespoons sweet rice wine
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped
  • 8 skin-on, boned chicken thighs (about 3 lb.)
  • Vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups shallots, thinly sliced (about 5 large)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons garlic, thinly sliced (about 5 cloves)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

How to Make It

  1. Whisk together first 5 ingredients in a shallow dish or zip-top plastic freezer bag; add chicken, turning to coat. Cover or seal, and chill 30 minutes to 3 hours.

  2. Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly grease a 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Remove chicken from marinade, discarding marinade. Place chicken, skin sides up, in prepared baking dish. Bake at 375° for 40 minutes or until done and skin is golden brown.

  3. Meanwhile, pour oil to a depth of 2 inches into a Dutch oven; heat over medium-high heat to 350°. Lightly dredge shallots in flour, shaking off excess. Fry shallots, in batches, 1 to 2 minutes or just until crispy. Drain on a paper towel-lined baking sheet. Repeat procedure with garlic and jalapeño pepper. Sprinkle shallots, garlic, and jalapeño pepper generously with salt and pepper to taste.

  4. Divide chicken among individual serving plates. Sprinkle with shallots, garlic, jalapeño pepper, and cilantro. Serve immediately.

Cooking In Everyday English