This is another fabulous recipe from Rachel Allen’s Home Cooking.
In fact, this was the first recipe I tried from this book. I love marinated and grilled chicken and am always on the lookout for new recipes, though I think my mum makes the best version which I have tried endlessly to recreate and which comes close but, of course, it can’t quite compare. Like most Vietnamese mothers, mine works from taste memory rather than from written recipes, yet her dishes seem to sing each and every time. Sadly, I think I missed out on that gene and am trying to make up for it by learning from different recipes and lots of trial and error in the kitchen.
Rachel Allen’s recipe for Thai Sticky Chicken is truly delicious and it simply has to be because the ingredients are exactly what one wants in an Asian-inspired marinade. Her recipe is really quick to put together – simply chop up a few ingredients, put everything into the food processor and blend away. Place the chicken pieces in a large freezer bag and pour the marinade over, leaving the chicken to marinate preferably overnight. But if time is tight, 30 minutes is also good. The recipe calls for chicken drumsticks but you can also use chicken thighs or chicken Maryland pieces (thigh with drumstick attached) for a more substantial meal.
This is something I like to make during the week, usually the night before so that I can come home after a long day at work, take the chicken from the fridge and let it come to room temperature while the oven is pre-heating. And while it is in the oven, I simply turn on the rice cooker. As the chicken can be a bit salty from the fish sauce, it goes perfectly with steamed jasmine rice and maybe a small salad on the side.
And speaking of fish sauce … if your kitchen is in a separate room with a door, you would be best advised to close the door as the aroma from the roasting chicken can be quite pungent. As much as I love the taste of fish sauce, its smell can be a little strong for some. That said, the smell is not that bad, but after reading some comments online about this recipe, I thought it was interesting that some people were put off by the smell, even though they loved the dish. Let me know what you think 😉
- 4 chicken Maryland pieces (or 8 chicken drumsticks)
- 2 red chillies
- 3 cm piece of ginger, peeled & roughly chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 2 lemongrass stalks, roughly chopped
- a good handful of coriander leaves and stalks
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- Using a sharp knife, cut a few slashes into the chicken pieces. Place the chicken pieces into a large zip-lock freezer bag.
- Place the remaining ingredients into a food processor and blend until you have a runny paste. Pour the marinade over the chicken in the freezer bag, making sure that the chicken is well-coated. Seal the bag and leave the chicken to marinate in the fridge overnight, but a few hours is also fine.
- Take the chicken out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature (about 20-30 minutes).
- Preheat the oven to 220°C.
- In a roasting dish that will contain all of the chicken pieces later, lightly drizzle the bottom of the dish with olive oil. Arrange the chicken pieces in the pan and roast for 35-40 minutes until the skin is lovely and golden.
- Serve with steamed jasmine rice.
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If you have made this dish, I would love to hear how it turned out! Please leave a comment below and share your photos on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter using #eatlittlebird