Shantung chicken

Spicy, crisp-skinned and deliciously tender, Shantung chicken is vinegary, sweet and delicately spiced.

  • 2 hrs cooking
  • Serves 4
  • Print


Shantung chicken
  • 1.6 kilogram (3¼-pound) whole chicken
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 2 centimetre (¾-inch) piece fresh ginger (10g), grated
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 2 teaspoon sichuan peppercorns, crushed
  • 2 teaspoon peanut oil
  • 1/3 cup (75g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) water
  • 2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 fresh small red thai (serrano) chilli, chopped finely


Shantung chicken
  • 1
    Wash chicken under cold water; pat dry inside and out with absorbent paper.
  • 2
    Combine garlic, ginger, sauce, sherry, pepper and oil in a large bowl; add chicken, coat in marinade. Cover; refrigerate overnight.
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 220°C/425°F.
  • 4
    Place chicken on an oiled wire rack in a large baking dish. Half-fill baking dish with water (it should not touch the chicken). Roast, uncovered, about 1 hour 20 minutes or until cooked through.
  • 5
    Meanwhile, make shantung sauce. Stir sugar and the water in a small saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil; boil, uncovered, without stirring, about 5 minutes or until sauce thickens slightly. Remove from heat; stir in vinegar and chilli.
  • 6
    Remove chicken from oven; when cool enough to handle chop meat coarsely; discard bones. Serve drizzled with shantung sauce.


Sichuan peppercorns are a mildly hot spice native to the Sichuan province of China. While not related to the peppercorn family, the small, red-brown aromatic sichuan berries look like black peppercorns and have a distinctive peppery-lemon flavour and aroma.

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