Five-Spice Chicken


This family recipe was a favourite when I was growing up and continues to be a favourite with my children. The marinade only takes a few minutes to put together. If you have the time, prepare ahead and allow the chicken to marinate all day or overnight.

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes
Serves: 4


  • 2 kg chicken drumsticks (10–12) or 4 chicken Marylands


  • 1 tablespoon five-spice powder
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons dry sherry or Chinese wine
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ¼ tablespoon grated ginger (optional)


1Preheat oven to 180°C.

2Place all marinade ingredients in a large baking dish and stir to combine. Add the chicken, tossing to coat. If you have time, allow chicken to marinate for 2 hours or more.

3Place chicken in oven for 45 minutes and cook until the meat starts to pull away from the bone. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes.

4This dish is great served with a simple green salad and rice or noodles.

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As published in Peninsula Kids Magazine – Spring 2016


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