Dinner ideas

Peri peri chicken

This simple homemade peri peri sauce has a medium heat level. Remove all the seeds for a milder heat, or keep them all in for a spicy kick!
Butterflied piri piri chicken with roast potatoes in a round serving dish.Photography John Paul Urizar

This Portuguese-inspired dish, also known as piri piri chicken, is a delicious twist on a roast chook. You can use other cuts of chicken on the bone if you like in this peri peri chicken recipe, such as wings, thigh cutlets and marylands.

How to butterfly a chicken

Butterflying is a technique used to flatten poultry so that it can cook evenly and more quickly, especially when it comes to roasting in the oven or cooking on the grill or barbecue.

To butterfly a whole chicken, such as for this Portuguese chicken recipe, place it breast-side-down on a board. Cut down both sides of the backbone with strong kitchen scissors. Discard the backbone (or you can freeze it to make your own stock). Turn the chicken over, then press down firmly with the heel of your hand to flatten it out.


Peri peri sauce



Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced).


PERI PERI SAUCE Halve 3 chillies lengthways. Remove seeds and discard. Coarsely chop all chillies; process with remaining ingredients until well combined. Season well with salt.


Prick potatoes all over with a fork. Microwave on high (100%) for 3 minutes or until tender. Cut into 4cm pieces.


Rub 1/3 cup peri peri sauce on both sides of chicken. Heat oil in a large flameproof roasting pan over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, skin-side down, for 5 minutes, then turn over. Add potatoes to the pan. Cook for a further 5 minutes, turning the potatoes until golden. Transfer pan to oven. Roast for 25 minutes or until chicken juices run clear when the thickest part of a thigh is pierced with a skewer.


Combine mayonnaise with remaining peri peri sauce.


Serve chicken and potatoes with peri peri mayonnaise and grilled lemon halves, topped with oregano leaves.

Ask the butcher to butterfly the chicken for you if you prefer.

Test Kitchen tip

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