Admittedly I’m more obsessed with Asian flavours of late than I usually am. Which is precisely why I thought this year’s Easter roast called for something less traditional. I’ve made a quick weekday version of this dish using chicken breasts on numerous occasions. But a whole roast chicken is something entirely different. It’s succulent, rustic, and oh-so comforting.
My Asian roast chicken is smothered in soy sauce and boasts a fancy fried egg top-hat. Of course this is largely for aesthetic quirk, but you absolutely must make enough eggs to go around. Fried egg, kimchi, potato, and chilli sauce is a formidable combination. Sriracha being my first choice in chilli sauce of course!
Kimchi is an Asian fermented pickle comprising mostly of cabbage and tasty Asian flavours like garlic, chilli and ginger. I found mine at a farmers market up the Garden Route last week, but with its rise in popularity, I bet you could find it in a large grocery store or two. If not, your local Asian supermarket will definitely have it, and probably at a fraction of the price too.
How to make asian roast chicken
- 1.5 kg whole chicken
- 1 onion
- 4 whole cloves of garlic, plus one clove crushed
- Thumb-sized pice of ginger, plus one teaspoon chopped
- 1 lemon
- Third of a cup soy sauce
- 1 Tbs honey
- 1Tbs sesame oil
- 1 tsp five-spice powder
- 2 potatoes cut into chunks
- 2 sweet potatoes cut into chunks
- 1 small jar kimchi
- Handful fresh coriander for garnish
- Chilli sauce (Sriracha) to serve
1.Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
2.Cut the onion in half horizontally. Reserve one half, and cut the other half into chunks.
3.Bruise the thumb-sized piece of ginger with the back of your knife, and squash the whole garlic cloves with the blade of your knife.
4.Push the onion chunks, ginger, and garlic into the cavity of the chicken.
5.Cut the lemon in half, squeeze one half of its juice into the cavity and push that half into the cavity too. Reserve the other half of the lemon along with the onion half.
6.Truss the chicken with kitchen string. You don’t have to do it perfectly, but make sure the legs are tied together so as to ensure the stuffing doesn’t fall out.
7.In a bowl, combine the crushed garlic, chopped ginger, soy sauce, honey, sesame oil, and five-spice powder. Squeeze in the juice of the reserved lemon half.
8.Place the onion half, and remaining lemon half, facing upwards, in the middle of a baking tray. Place the chicken on top of them in order to raise it slightly from the baking tray. You may have to trim the ends of the onion and lemon halves in order to get them to lie flat.
9.Arrange the potatoes and sweet potatoes around the chicken.
10.Drizzle potatoes lightly with olive oil, and season liberally.
11.Using a basting brush, baste the chicken with approximately half of the soy sauce mixture. Try tuck larger pieces of garlic and ginger between legs and wings so that they don’t burn.
12.20 minutes in, baste the chicken again with the remaining soy sauce. Allow the chicken to cook for another 20 – 30 minutes.
13.The chicken may be ready a couple of minutes before the potatoes. If so, simply remove the chicken from the baking tray and allow it to rest while the potatoes finish off.
14.Once the potatoes are crispy, remove them from the oven and bash them slightly with a large spoon. Top them with as much kimchi as desired and mix them around roughly in order for the flavours to meld.
15.Return the potatoes to the oven for another 5 minutes so that the kimchi becomes warm.
16.While potatoes are in the oven ,fry four eggs. Place one on top of the chicken when serving, and reserve the others for guests to dish up for themselves.
17.Garnish potatoes with fresh coriander and serve with chilli sauce.