Very rarely in Sydney would I come across a 30cm in length fried chicken. With Sydney-siders increase of fried cravings over the years, Hot Star Large Fried Chicken (96 Liverpool Street, Sydney NSW 2000) has successfully opened its first store in the heart of the CBD. With epic queues all the way down the street, the sight of 250 grams of succulent JUMBO chicken breast gets food lovers eye-twitching and it’s totally worth it. Hot star started their frying food scene back in Taiwan Shilin night Market in 1992 with one mouth-watering mission- “To deliver authentic Taiwanese street food“. And let me just state I am certainly happy that chicken crossed the road. Teehee.
I was very fortunate to be on the other side of the shipping-container sized kitchen and witness the hard working staff of 10 assemble all this fried madness. Taking 30 minutes of Casey’s (Hot Star Store Manager) time meant a lot to me and to her as pipping hot chicken continue to get pampered in coated flour then dunked in hundred degree oil. Also with hungry starving customers continue to pile, it was essential to absorb all the secret information and share it with you guys.
Customers are keen for their FRIED CHICKEN.
Can’t wait any longer…
Who are we kidding, the Original Fried Chicken ($7.90) is amazingly addictive with enormous pepper seasoning . I mean, they sell almost 600 fried chicken steaks, alone in 1 day. Sure, when you first have your eyes glued to this chicken, it may look dry, but don’t judge a book by its cover. It’s surprisingly moist, really moist and tender. Extremely crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, I can say you will appreciate the minimum 12 hours marinated flavour, texture and quality of this XXL chicken steak. This fresh chicken sensation is not as oily as I thought, if you examine it closely tiny bubbles of fried flour, looks appetising. I couldn’t convince Casey to tell me why this is slightly crisper than Taiwan Hot Star but I do know they put a lot of hours in spoiling their chicken breast with pepper seasoning or if you are game enough try chilli powder. I honestly questioned a few times whether this is a chicken thigh piece, but no, Casey stated it’s CHICKEN BREAST! This juicy chicken, cooked to order may involve palm-sweating and teeth-grinding experience. Also it may get a bit messy as bone and cartilage are present. But that’s ok, you’d be too busy enjoying this succulent treat, you won’t even care.
Original Fried Chicken ($7.90)
Woah! This chicken breast is bigger than my hand.
Tiny bubbles of protein madness!
It seems like Hot Star have taking frying to a whole new level of tastiness by introducing Deep Fried King Oyster Mushroom ($3.90) is placed onto the palm of my hands. I legitimately crammed everything into my mouth, which is fine by me but not so sure about Casey’s expression. Let’s just say she politely giggled. The secret method for making a crisp, savory crunch is carefully hand-selecting the mushrooms to ensure quality and this my friend creates a rich, concentrated flavour. Each chopped piece of pepper seasoned mushroom squirts quite a lot of juice. Just FYI, this meaty and firm texture mushroom is a must for a movie snack.
Deep Fried King Oyster Mushroom ($3.90)
I am not going to lie: Deep Fried Sweet Potato ($3.90) is ridiculously sweet! NATURALLY! It’s a real sweet treat. They’re full of flavour that are secretly seasoned with… you’ll never guess, PLUM POWDER. These finger shaped sticks are a great alternative to standard French fries. I absolutely love the light crisp on the outside and the warm soft mash inside. Yes, another ongoing obsession of mine.
Deep Fried Sweet Potato ($3.90)
The first thing I will comment about this Deep Fried Curly Fries ($3.90) is that it’s not curly enough. However, scoffing down all this starch goodness, just shows how easily I get manipulated by its crunchy texture and flavour. Yeap, I think my stomach is pleasantly satisfied with that gold brown fried deliciousness.
Deep Fried Curly Fries ($3.90)
Very pleased to share behind the scene of what goes around here at Hot Star. Chicken breasted are firstly coated with flour and seasoning before deep frying them.
Flour and seasoning.
Chicken breast waiting to be cooked.
Fry baby, FRY!
After deep frying them for about 12 mintues, let these chicken steak be air dried before packaging them.
How smart is this, ready to fry curly fries.
Ready to fry King Oyster Mushroom.
Ready to fry Sweet Potato.
Fresh basil is important for the chicken bites.
Can’t wait to try these Chicken Bites next time.
It is good to know Hot Star only orders FRESH NOT FROZEN chicken, every single day.They believe fresh ingredients for instance chicken and vegetables is the key to making their products more delicious and addictive. Chicken bites will be next on my list to try. And yes, the fry goodness is really worth waiting for! If you have already tried Hot Star’s fried chicken in Sydney, what do you think? Have you tried their other existing stores in Melbourne or Taiwan? Let me know your opinion.
Photos by Vanny Tang
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