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Lemon Chicken, Chinese-style

This popular Cantonese dish from Hong Kong is something of a one-off, as lemons are rarely used in Chinese cooking.

Good with boiled rice and pak choi or steamed greens as a tasty lunch or supper dish, or as part of a larger Chinese-themed menu.

Leftovers, once the skin is removed, can be mixed with chopped coriander, crème fraîche, and diced cucumber, and served cold with salad leaves or in a sandwich.

Printable version    A4    |    A5    |    Index card

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Prepare Ahead

The batter can be made up to 2 hours in advance. Add a little water if it becomes too thick.


  1. 1

    Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl, add 300ml (10fl oz) of cold water, and whisk to make a smooth batter. Set aside for 30 minutes.

  2. 2

    Heat the oil for deep-frying to 180°C (350°F). Coat the chicken in the batter, then deep-fry in batches for 5 minutes, or until golden. Drain on kitchen paper.

  3. 3

    Meanwhile, make the sauce by whisking the cornflour with the lemon juice to make a smooth paste. Pour this into a small saucepan and add the stock, honey, sugar, and ginger. Stir over a low heat until the sauce comes to the boil. Simmer for 1 minute, or until it thickens and becomes translucent.

  4. 4

    Arrange the chicken on a serving platter and spoon the hot sauce over the top.


  • 200g self-raising flour
  • ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 4 chicken breasts, skinless boneless
  • 1 L vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 30g cornflour
  • 120ml lemon, fresh juice
  • 360ml chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp clear honey
  • 4 tbsp soft light brown sugar
  • 1 cm root ginger, fresh, peeled and grated

Serves 4

Total time required Total time:

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10 products

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Recipe published with permission from © Dorling Kindersley Limited. The Cooking Book 2008


The Cooking Book

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