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Sesame Chicken Fingers Recipe

Course: Appetizer, Hors D'oeuvre, Main Course
Total Time: Under 4 Hours
Skill Level: Easy
Cost: Inexpensive
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Sesame Chicken Fingers

Photo by: Joseph DeLeo

Instead of being deep-fried, these chicken fingers are baked in a colorful sesame crust. Black sesame seeds can be found at Japanese markets (where they are called gomen), as well as at natural foods stores and Armenian markets. If black sesame seeds are unavailable, use more white.

Yield: Makes 24 pieces, which will serve 6 as an appetizer


  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

For the marinade:

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine or sherry
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 egg white
  • 1/3 cup white sesame seeds, or as needed
  • ½ cup black sesame seeds, or as needed
  • Spray oil
  • Dipping Sauces (optional) (see Notes)


1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Wash and dry the chicken breasts and trim off any fat. Cut the breasts on the diagonal into strips the size of your baby finger. Combine the ingredients for the marinade in a mixing bowl. Add the chicken fingers and stir to mix. Marinate the chicken for 3 hours, stirring once or twice.

2. Drain the chicken fingers in a strainer and blot dry with paper towels. Place the egg white in a shallow bowl and lightly beat with a fork. (Beat enough to break up the white, but not so much that it becomes foamy.) Combine the sesame seeds in another shallow bowl and stir to mix. Lightly spray a nonstick baking sheet with oil.

3. Using two forks, dip each chicken finger in the egg white, letting the excess drip off, then in the sesame seeds, taking care to coat all sides. Arrange the chicken in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake until cooked, 8 to 10 minutes, turning once. Serve at once with the dipping sauces.


Honey-Soy Dipping Sauce:

Here’s a sweet-and-sour sauce for people who don’t like sweet-and-sour sauce. There’s nothing sticky or cloying about it.

2/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce

¼ cup distilled vinegar

¼ cup honey, or to taste

¼ cup water, or to taste

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger

3 scallions, trimmed and minced

Put all the ingredients in a nonreactive mixing bowl and whisk to combine. If the sauce tastes too strong, add a little more water; if it’s too salty, add a little more honey. Transfer the sauce to small bowls for dipping.

Makes 1¾ cups

11 Calories Per Serving (2 Teaspoons); 0.3g Protein; 0g Fat; 0g Saturated Fat; 2.7g Carbohydrate; 179mg Sodium; 0mg Cholesterol

Vietnamese Dipping Sauce:

This delicate sauce goes by the name of nuoc mam in Vietnam, where it's served as an all-purpose table sauce.

¼ cup warm water

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice

3 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce

1 tablespoon honey

½ carrot, shredded as finely as possible

Combine the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir to dissolve the honey. Divide the sauce among 4 tiny bowls for serving.

Makes about 1 cup

30 Calories Per Serving;* 1g Protein; 0g Fat; 0g Saturated Fat; 6g Carbohydrate; 114mg Sodium; 2mg Cholesterol

*Analysis is based on 4 servings.

© 2003, 2010 Steven Raichlen

183 Calories Per Serving; 20g Protein; 9g Fat; 1g Saturated Fat; 6g Carbohydrate; 564mg Sodium; 37mg Cholesterol


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