Roast Chicken with Indonesian Spices

, from Issue #12. August, 2015
Photography by Minka Firth.
Roast Chicken with Indonesian Spices

Serves: 4


10 chicken drumsticks

Spice Paste
4 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 red chilli, seeded and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
¼ cup chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
4 stalks lemongrass, inner tender part only, finely chopped
1½ teaspoons ground coriander
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons shaved dark palm sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons peanut oil


Combine all the spice ingredients except the oil, in a food processor and process to form a thick, finely ground paste.

Heat the oil in a heavy-based sauté pan and gently fry the paste until it becomes fragrant and darkens a little, about 3-4 minutes. Allow to cool completely. Slash each drumstick twice in the thickest part and spread each evenly with the paste, pushing it into the slashes. Cover and refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Roast the chicken in a lightly greased baking dish for approximately 45 minutes or until the juices run clear. If the spices on the bottom of the dish start to catch, add a little water. Remove from the oven, cover lightly and leave to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Serve with rice, warm naan bread and a crisp leaf salad or cooked green beans with herbed yoghurt.