• Shandong roast chicken (Adam Liaw)Source: Adam Liaw

It's basically a crispy skin chicken that has been twice-cooked (boiled then deep-fried) and then served with the classic Shandong sauce of black vinegar, soy, sugar, garlic and chilli. Destination Flavour China






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (215 votes)


  • 1 whole free-range chicken, about 1.6 kg
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
  • 2 tsp grated ginger, juice only (optional)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

Shandong sauce

  • 60 ml (¼ cup) black vinegar
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 bird’s eye chillies, thinly sliced
  • 1 coriander plant, stalk and root finely chopped, leaves reserved
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

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.


Standing time overnight

1. Rub the chicken all over with the salt, inside and out.

2. Place the dark soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, ginger juice and sugar in a small bowl and stir to dissolve the sugar.

3. Rub all the marinade over the chicken. Refrigerate the chicken overnight, leaving it uncovered to help the skin dry out. If you don’t have time to dry the chicken overnight (or even if you do), you can help dry out the skin by blowing it with a hairdryer for about 10 minutes. Drying the skin helps create a crisp skin.

4. Preheat the oven to 200°C.

5. Place the chicken in a baking dish and brush all over with the oil.

6. Roast for 1 hour, then remove from the oven and rest for 15 minutes. If you like, you can butterfly the chicken and roast it for 40-45 minutes instead.

7. For the Shandong sauce, combine all the ingredients together in a bowl, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add a few spoons of the rendered chicken oil from the pan.

8. Cut the chicken into pieces and serve smothered in the Shandong sauce and scattered with coriander leaves.


Photography by Adam Liaw.

Destination Flavour China with Adam Liaw starts 7.30pm, Wednesday 28 November on SBS and then on SBS On Demand. Visit the program page for recipes, videos and more.