For 4-6 people you need

1 large fresh chicken

1 can coconut milk

5-7 cm piece of root ginger, peeled

3 large garlic cloves, peeled

2-3 chillies, deseeded (I used long red cayenne chillies)

A handful of fresh coriander

15 ml turmeric

5ml cumin

5ml black peppercorns

15ml powdered chicken stock

2 medium onion sliced into ‘petals’ or 5mm thick rings

Optional: extra chilli to slice, coriander to serve.

To spatchcock the chicken

Remove all the packaging

Place the chicken on a cutting board, breasts facing down and the ‘pope’s nose’ or tail, towards you.

Using a pair of sharp kitchen shears or special ‘poultry shears’, if you have them, cut from the side of the tail up the spine to the neck cavity; repeat this on the other side of the spine. Either dispose of the spine or use it to make stock.

Turn the chicken breast side up and arrange the legs on either side. Now using the “heal” of your hand press down firmly on the centre of the breast. This will flatten the chicken.

Cut away any excess neck skin.

For this recipe, where I wanted the cooking sauce to penetrate, I slashed the fleshy parts of the legs & breasts. For normal dry roasting you will not do this.

Place the onion in the base of a baking dish, arrange the chicken on top, skin side up.

To prepare the sauce, place the coconut milk into the flask of your blender. Add the remaining ingredients and blitz until they are all well blended.

Pour the sauce over the chicken. Sprinkle over the optional extra chilli.

Roast at 200°C for 1 hour. Baste with the sauce every 15 minutes.


Serve with savoury rice and your normal curry sambals; add a sprinkling of fresh coriander


Wine recommendation: a fruity Chenin Blanc, Full bodied Chardonnay or Fruit driven Sauvignon Blanc