In Vietnam, the black chicken is enjoyed for its gamey flavour, and in this recipe, Luke Nguyen makes a colourful marinade that is packed with strong spices, to complement the bird.






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (22 votes)


  • 1 small black chicken, separate the legs from the breast
  • jasmine rice, to serve


  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 red Asian shallots, finely diced
  • 1 lemongrass stem, white part only, finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 4 lemon leaves, thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp Sapa honey (or regular honey)
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) galangal, peeled and pounded in a mortar and pestle

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Marinating time 2 hours

Put the salt, pepper, Asian shallots, lemongrass, fish sauce, chilli powder, sesame seeds, lemon leaves, honey and galangal in a large mixing bowl and mix well.

Add the chicken, rubbing the marinade over and under its skin. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate for 2 hours, or overnight for a better result.

Heat a barbecue grill or chargrill pan to medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 15 minutes on each side. Once cooked, place the chicken on a cutting board, skin side up, and chop the leg and breast into a total of eight pieces with a heavy cleaver.

Serve the chicken on a platter with jasmine rice.