Chicken Kra-pow



This might just be the easiest Thai recipe I know. Just a few ingredients in perfect balance for a delicious and authentic meal.


3 cloves garlic
2 large red chilies, seeds removed
500g chicken thigh (you can use breast, or a mixture of the two)
1 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp fish sauce
½ tsp caster sugar
1 ½ cups loosely packed Thai basil leaves
a wedge of lime and a fried egg (optional), to serve 



  1. Roughly chop the garlic and chilli together on a board. In a separate bowl, coarsely chop the chicken to your preferred consistency and mix through the oyster sauce.
  2. Heat a wok and add in the oil. Fry the garlic and chili for a few minutes until fragrant and then add in the chicken. Mix the chicken with the chilli and garlic and distribute it over the surface of the wok for a minute or two to caramelise slightly. Toss, then allow to sit in contact with the wok again for another minute. Add in the fish sauce and sugar, toss and continue to fry for another minute or so, moistening with a little water or stock if it starts to get too dry.
  3. Stir through the basil leaves and remove from the heat. Top with a fried egg if you like, and serve with rice and a wedge of lime.

This recipe appears in my third book, Asian After Work.

Asian After Work


How to Cook Fried Rice – Egg Fried Rice

Egg Fried Rice


The first thing you need to know about wok cooking is that oil is very important. To carry flavour around your dish, flavour the oil first. If you want to learn good wok technique, this simple fried rice is a good choice.


3 eggs

1 tsp sesame oil

¾ tsp salt

4 cups leftover cooked jasmine rice, cold

2 tbsp vegetable oil

3 spring onions, finely sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp soy sauce

¼ tsp white pepper


  1. Beat the eggs with the sesame oil and ¼ tsp of salt. Heat the wok over medium-high heat and add the vegetable oil. Add half the spring onions, garlic and the remaining salt and fry until fragrant. Add the rice and soy sauce and toss to coat in the oil, pressing the rice against the side of the wok to break up any clumps.
  2. When the rice softens and begins to toast, move all the rice to one side of the wok and add the egg mixture to the open side. Stir the eggs until they are nearly set, then combine with the rice. Add the remaining spring onions and white pepper and toss through.

This recipe is from Adam Liaw’s Asian Cookery School, page 78.

Adam Liaw's Asian Cookery School

How to Cook Asian Greens

Oiled Greens

If you’ve always wanted to make Asian greens taste like the dish you order in a Chinese restaurant, this is how.


1 bunch Chinese broccoli (gai lan) (about 250g)

2 tbsp salt

1 tbsp vegetable oil


Oyster Sauce

¼ cup oyster sauce

¼ cup coarse stock, chicken stock or water

¼ tsp cornflour mixed with 1 tbsp stock or water



  1. Trim the Chinese broccoli of any dry ends and rinse it well in cold water. Cut into 10cm lengths, grouping together the thick stalks, thin stalks and leaves separately. Split any very thick stalks in half lengthwise.
  2. Bring 2L of water to a rolling boil and add the salt. Add the thick stalks and boil for about a minute, then add the thin stalks and the leaves on top. Pour over the vegetable oil and boil for a further 2 minutes, occasionally shaking the greens in the water with tongs or chopsticks to coat them in the oil and to dissolve the salt into the water. Remove from the water and drain well.
  3. For the oyster sauce, bring the oyster sauce and stock to a simmer, then add the cornflour mixture. Stir until thickened then remove from the heat.
  4. Serve the greens as they are, or with some of the oyster sauce poured over the top.


This recipe is from Adam Liaw’s Asian Cookery School, page 133.


Adam Liaw's Asian Cookery School

What I Did in 2014 – The Highlights
Four hours outside Dubai, UAE.

Four hours outside Dubai, UAE. This shot was taken the day before shooting started on Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which was filmed right here!

2014 was another big year. Time always seems to fly by, but I think I’ve managed to pack more into this year than just about any other. I don’t want to bore you with EVERYTHING I did, so here are just a few of the highlights.

I joined Good Food as a food columnist. You can see my recipes in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age every month or online anytime at Here are a couple you might like from the past year:

Salmon oyakodon

Salmon oyakodon (and a bit of a primer on sashimi too)

Cinnamon and watermelon granita


American pancakes

I still write for Feast magazine and a bunch of other publications as well, so you’ll still be seeing my writing pop up all over the place. Here’s a piece on a dinner I went to in Tasmania that I wrote for The Wall Street Journal.

I released my third book.  I think Adam’s Big Pot is my best yet. Each of my books is generally just a collection of what I’ve been cooking that year, so they’re a bit autobiographical in that sense.

Now that my son is getting older and eats mostly what my wife and I eat, the book is focused on simple family recipes that are also authentic. It’s been getting a huge response and every week I get dozens of photos of all the dishes you’ve all been cooking from it. Thank you, and keep them coming! If you want to have a look at some sample recipes, check them out here.

Experiences2 (1 of 1)

I think travel is vital to good cooking, and this year I traveled an awful lot. With cooking more than most other things it’s easy to get stuck in a rut of buying the same ingredients and cooking the same dishes over and over. Travel forces you to experience new flavours, new techniques and whole new ways of eating.

This year I was away from home for nearly eight months all up. I visited England, France, Spain Portugal, The United Arab Emirates, Sweden, Italy, Greece, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Myanmar and Thailand and had some incredible experiences – both in food and otherwise. You can follow my further travels on Instagram.

On the balcony. Oia, Santorini, Greece.

On the balcony. Oia, Santorini, Greece.

Matsuri in Hakui, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan.

Matsuri in Hakui, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan.

The Alhambra, Granada, Spain.

The Alhambra, Granada, Spain.

I ate a lot of great stuff too, and you can see a list of some of the food that floated my boat here.

Of course, I didn’t just go overseas. I travelled all around Australia as well, which brings me to…

Our third Destination Flavour season for SBS, Destination Flavour: Down Under, was our highest rating season yet! Our second episode was actually the sixth highest rating episode of a food program in Australia last year, and the highest on SBS. We put a lot of hard work into the show and it’s great to know you’re all enjoying it.

Edith Falls, NT, Australia.

Edith Falls, NT, Australia.

On an amphibious pearl boat in Cygnet Bay, Northern WA, Australia.

On an amphibious pearl boat in Cygnet Bay, Northern WA, Australia.

Cooking crayfish in Kaikoura, New Zealand.

Cooking crayfish in Kaikoura, New Zealand.

Here are a few recipes you might like from the series:

Yoghurt pikelets with kiwifruit jam

New Zealand Hunter’s pie

Salt and pepper Moreton Bay bugs

Ploughman’s lunch with salt-crust pork belly

I visited UNICEF’s operations in Myanmar. It was a life-changing trip in many ways and here’s a piece I wrote on it just to try and get my head around the experience. I’ve been involved with helping children through my mother’s work in China for more than 20 years, and a UNICEF Ambassador for 2 years now. Not everyone will have the chance to see first hand where the money they donate to good causes actually goes, but trust me it’s incredible. If you want to help UNICEF Australia, you can donate here.

Temples at dusk in Bagan, Myanmar.

Temples at dusk in Bagan, Myanmar.

With kids in a UNICEF-supported school, Thet Ke Kan Village, Myanmar.

With kids in a UNICEF-supported school, Thet Ke Kan Village, Myanmar.

I cycled around Hokkaido. Well, not the whole way around but we did more than 700 kilometres over 5 days. It was a fantastic trip with great food that made up for the EXTREMELY sore legs. The food and scenery were incredible but I honestly I think I enjoyed the cycling even more. I’m not a MAMIL yet but I am really liking being on the bike. If only I had more time.

At the top of the Bohor Pass, Hokkaido, Japan.

At the top of the Bohor Pass, Hokkaido, Japan.

Cycling Hokkaido

And finally, my son Christopher turned one! There’s not much more to say about that other than he’s growing into a great little guy and I love being his dad.

Christopher's First Birthday

Thank you all for supporting me this year in the various things I do. I love hearing from you too, so leave a comment below or try and catch up with me on social media on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter.

I hope you had a great 2014 too, and here’s to many more good times to come in 2015!


16 Memorable Things I Ate In 2014

The entrance to La Tupina (see No. 4).

I know I say it every year but this time it was almost impossible to narrow the list down. I did a stupid amount of travel this year and ate an even stupider amount of food, but I think I just managed to pick my favourites.

There are so many more dishes I wish I could have included but, without any further excuses and in no particular order, here are 16 memorable things I ate this year (that I didn’t cook myself).

Here are some links to last year’s list and the year before’s, if you’re interested.

And if you want to keep more regular tabs on what I’m eating and cooking you can throw me a follow on Instagram @liawadam.

1. Pastéis de Belém, A Chique de Belem, Lisbon, Portugal

The far-more-famous Pastéis de Belém down the road is accepted as the home of the Portuguese tart, but it can feel a bit like you’re on the conveyor belt of a tourist factory. At A Chique de Belem they’re still “fabrico próprio” (made on premises) and excellent quality, and you can even sit, have a coffee and actually enjoy yourself while eating tart or four (or six). I honestly thought the tarts were better here, too.

2. Foie gras and marmalade, Ganbara, San Sebastian, Spain

A pintxos crawl in San Sebastian is probably one of the best food experiences in the world, and doesn’t even matter that the food isn’t always that good. Don’t get me wrong – there are some exceptional pintxos around, but there’s as much boring/bad as there is interesting/great. This foie gras and marmalade from Ganbara was one of the greats.

3. Francesinha, Bufete Fase, Porto, Portugal

You could start a civil war in Porto on the question of where has the best Francesinha (“Little Frenchie” – it’s a Portuguese evolution of a Croque Monsieur) but after much wailing and gnashing of teeth I settled on Bufete Fase. The sound you hear when you eat it is your arteries weeping.

4. Confit goose wing and Salardaise potatoes, La Tupina, Bordeaux, France

Some say La Tupina has become an affectation of the rustic French cookery that made it famous but really, its only crime is aggressively staying the same while the food world evolved around it into something that can be overly critical, cynical and opinionated at times. If that’s an affectation, I don’t think that’s a bad thing.

5. Caffè freddo and pastries, Andreotti, Rome

My little brother lives around the corner from this place and brought me here on a searing hot Roman day. The caffè freddo is made with a base of espresso granita topped with more chilled espresso and a touch of milk. Now it’s the gold-standard for every hot summer’s day I’ve experienced since. A+ pastries, too FWIW.

6. Birthday cake, by Katherine Sabbath, Sydney

I’ve been a fan of Katherine’s on Instagram for ages and she so very, very kindly made this for my son’s first birthday. Often the trade-off for cakes that look this good is taste, but this was one of the best cakes I’ve ever eaten. Caramel mud cake with freeze-dried raspberries and toasted coconut plus cream cheese icing. The ice-cream cone is full of cupcake. Show-stopper.

7. Negitoro temaki, Sushi Shinnosuke, Kanazawa, Japan

Negitoro temaki (minced akami with Japanese leeks) is one of those salaryman sushi pieces that Japanese food snobs would never order in a fine-dining omakase. At Shinnosuke, though, the attention paid to the texture of meaty tuna and sharp leeks made it stand out, which is why it’s on the list instead of the more celebrated cuts like otoro nigiri. In fact, the whole meal at Shinnosuke was amazing. Completely different to somewhere like Sukibashi Jiro (which I guess since the doco has become the default benchmark for sushi restaurants everywhere) in the sense that the taisho’s style is some of the most contemporary stuff going around, but if this was in Tokyo you’d be paying three or four hundred dollars for it. In Kanazawa the whole meal was just a smidge over a hundred bucks.

8. Avgotaraho, capers and rakomelo, To Psarakis, Santorini, Greece

For such a tourist hotspot, the food on Santorini is incredible. Particularly in the somewhat-less-overrun towns of Vlychada and Ammoudi. This was my first time trying avgotaraho (semi-soft cured mullet roe) but it was like a more delicate, yolky version of karasumi or bottarga. These thick slabs were a perfect match with rakomelo (raki sweetened with honey).

9. Bacon and Prune Pave, Du Pain et Des Idées, Paris, France

This was just about the most perfect savoury snack I’ve ever eaten. I’m not kidding. Perfect smokiness of the farmer’s bacon, the right mix of crunchy, chewy and milky lactic fermentation in the dough, with a subtle sweetness of prune.

10. Native Australian ingredient tasting, Indian Pacific, somewhere on the Nullarbor Plain, Australia

For a long time native Australian ingredients have suffered from associations with gimmicky attempts to force “Australiana” into a modern Australian cuisine that has never really paid it much attention. I don’t really think much has changed. The gimmick has become the flavour of the month in fine-dining and chefs are now throwing native ingredients around with a shrug and wink, but I still haven’t really thought they’ve make much impact on how Australians really eat. Enter Mark Olive – and I say enter even though he’s being championing native foods for the best part of 30 years. His native ingredient tasting on board the Indian Pacific took place somewhere on the Nullarbor Plain during my 3-day journey crossing Australia from coast to coast and it has, at long last, opened my eyes to the possibilities of the incredible and unique flavours we have here.

11. Crayfish and chips, Nin’s Bin, Kaikoura, New Zealand

The Clark family live and breathe crayfish, and there’s a reason theirs is the best crayfish in New Zealand. Johnny catches them and cooks them in an old copper washing machine and his brother Ricky makes the chips (fried in dripping, no less). The secret to preserving the crayfish flavour is cooking them sixty at a time so that the water doesn’t dilute the flavour. Something to bear in mind if you ever have sixty crayfish lying around.

12. Toast Skagen, Hotel Diplomat, Stockholm, Sweden

This is a fantastic spot for lunch in Stockholm. Well-heeled and impossibly attractive Swedes of all ages in crisp-pressed shirts dining on Swedish classics with a bit of swank. Toast Skagen is lightly grilled bread topped with fresh prawns, dill, crème fraiche and vendace roe. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more civilised while eating toast.

13. Bain moke, Sone Kone Village, Myanmar

I’d just visited a rural health centre on a trip to Myanmar with UNICEF, and in Myanmar “rural” means we’d been crossing rivers in four-wheel drives for about 4 hours to get here. It was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever visited, and for a snack I bought a piece of this giant leavened pancake of peanut and coconut from a local seller. Ten cents a piece.

14. Ploughman’s lunch and a cloudy cider, The Mount Inn, Cotswolds, England

Anyone who still subscribes to the old trope that English food is terrible or boring is woefully out of touch. And it’s not that just magically got better a decade or so ago. It’s always been great.

15. Nasi campur, Warung Something Something, Bali

That’s not the name of the warung. I just can’t remember it. I’ve spent hours and hours in Bali on previous trips trying to track down some famous babi guling (usually great) or some new and popular fancy-casual restaurant (usually not-so-great) but this trip I just decided to eat from the local warung and sit by the pool. Maybe I just got lucky but the simple nasi campur from the place at the end of the street was different every day and as good as anything I’ve eaten in Bali, anywhere. Oh, and it cost a dollar a plate.

16. Pork jowl, abalone and fermented grains, Peter Gilmore, MONA, Hobart, Tasmania

Photo credit: Tourism Australia

This was one of the big fancy dishes at Tourism Australia’s big fancy dinner in Hobart. It was the best dinner I’ve ever been to. I wrote about it for The Wall Street Journal here.

Well, thanks for reading. That was a list of stuff I didn’t cook this year. If you want to have a look at some stuff I did, your best bet is here.

And if you want to see what else I got up to in 2014, try here.

Mulligatawny Soup

Mulligatawny Soup

For more recipes and great food ideas, follow me on Instagram. For recipe videos, hit up my Youtube channel.

This soup was born out of the times of the British Raj, with obvious English and Indian influences. The addition of rice is all important, and I like it when it’s cooked almost to a porridge-y consistency.


1 tbsp each butter and olive oil

1 large onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic

1½ tbsp curry powder

1 tsp garam masala

2 tsp salt

1 can diced tomatoes (400g)

1.5L chicken stock

½ cup washed uncooked brown rice, or jasmine rice

1 Granny smith apple, peeled and finely diced

1 carrot, peeled and finely diced

1 small sweet potato, peeled and finely diced

2 cups cooked shredded chicken (optional)

coriander and yoghurt, to serve




  1. Heat a large pot over high heat and fry the onion and garlic in the butter and olive oil. Add the curry powder, garam masala, salt and tomatoes and fry for a minute until the spices are fragrant.
  2. Add the chicken stock and the brown rice and simmer covered for one and a half hours, stirring occasionally. Add the apple, carrot and sweet potato and simmer for a further 30 minutes. Adjust for seasoning with a little salt if necessary.
  3. Stir through the Shredded chicken and a little yoghurt, and scatter with chopped coriander to serve.

This recipe is from my third cookbook, Adam’s Big Pot.


2013 Was A Really, Really Big Year

I know I say it every year, but it just seems to fly by, doesn’t it? But as surely as 2012 followed 2011, we are now at the end of 2013 and what a year it’s been. Here’s a really quick snapshot of what I’ve been doing for the past 12 months.

AAW (1 of 1)

I wrote. And then I wrote some more.

I wrote so much this year I literally broke my keyboard. My Wall Street Journal – Scene Asia column, Around the Table, continued to get a great response. A few of my pieces were even in their top food stories for 2013. I wrote a bunch of stuff for The Sydney Morning Herald, Good Food, The Australian and Feast Magazine. I was published in an anthology of feminist literature by Penguin, which was quite unexpected but also very nice.

But the biggest thing I wrote this year was my second book, Asian After Work. I’m immensely proud of it, and thank you so much for all the photos and comments you’ve sent through to me this year. There’s really nothing better as an author seeing a dish go from an idea in your head to becoming a regular fixture on someone’s family dinner table. It’s humbling and I am grateful to you all for giving me that experience.


Asian After Work has only been in the shops for a couple of months but sales have been fantastic! We’ve sold tens of thousands of copies and my publisher has already ordered a reprint so there’ll be more to come! I’ve also agreed to write a third book, so look out for that later in 2014.

I travelled. A lot.

By my count I’ve stayed in more than 60 hotels this year. That’s more than one a week! There’s been a lot of traveling but it wasn’t without a purpose. I cooked a banquet as a guest of the Australian High Commission in Kuala Lumpur, a cooking class for 200 (yes, TWO HUNDRED) in Bali with Jonah Lomu and UB40 (I’m serious), took over from Stephanie Alexander designing the menu for this year’s Rymill Harvest Lunch, as well as going through Thailand, China, Australia and New Zealand. I fulfilled a dream of mine in writing, developing and presenting Destination Flavour: Japan. Travelling the entire length of that wonderful country over three months was an unforgettable experience and it has really affected the way I approach food.

What city am I in again?

What city am I in again?

That the series turned out to be such a success was really the icing on the cake. The response from all of you watching the show has been phenomenal and I really want to thank you for tuning in and supporting a show that we tried to make as intelligent, honest and entertaining as possible. The ratings were GREAT (our last episode of Japan DOUBLED the number of viewers that tuned in to the final episode of the first Destination Flavour season) and SBS has been kind enough to commission a third series. I’m right in the middle of filming that now so stay tuned for more Destination Flavour to come next year!

We connected.

Thank you so much for all the interaction on social media this year. There’s nearly 200,000 of you all across facebook and Twitter and I feel like I’ve heard from almost all of you! I held out for years but finally succumbed to the wiles of Instagram, and much to my surprise I actually love it! (I still don’t use those weird filters, though.) I look forward to sharing more with you and hearing more from you over 2014.


I ate. More than I should have.

My computer tells me I’ve created more than 300 new recipes this year, but rather than just the food I made, one of the perks of hosting a food and travel show is that you get to eat a lot of nice stuff that other people make. Here’s a selection of the most memorable things I ate this year.

Family came first.

I feel like I’ve spent a whole year in hospitals. I don’t really need to go into the gory details of it but at one point my grandmother, mother and wife were all in three different hospitals across three different countries and I was flying between them all! It’s been really difficult at times but amazingly, MIRACULOUSLY, not only has everyone pulled through but they’re all in better health than they were before it all went pear-shaped. It’s amazing how these kinds of things can really put things into perspective for you. Beijing-(3-of-6)

It hasn’t all been bad, though. The biggest and best hospital news of the year was the happiest of my life. We welcomed little Christopher Wren Liaw into the world! I know I’m gushing like every new dad does, but he’s probably (easily) the best thing to ever happen to me.

We helped.

This year I was appointed UNICEF Australia’s National Ambassador for Nutrition. Through the Bread for Good campaign and other initiatives from UNICEF, we’ve made a impact on the lives of children around Australia and the world. There’s still more work to be done. If you’d like to help UNICEF and the great work they do, you can donate here.

I hosted Christmas lunch.

I don’t normally mention specific meals, but this year there was a point where it looked like our family was going to be a few people smaller this Christmas. It all turned out for the best and gathering my whole family across 4 generations and 5 continents together at my dining table for a big family Christmas lunch was one of happiest days I’ve ever had. I don’t mind telling you that a few tears were shed, but I am very glad to say they were all tears of joy.

Christmas Lunch 2013 - At home, Sydney

Christmas Lunch 2013 – At home, Sydney

Well, that’s a lot to fit into one little year! Thanks again for all the good times, laughs and support. I really do feel like the luckiest guy on Earth.

Bobo2 (1 of 1)

16 Memorable Things I Ate in 2013
Hot orange-glazed turkey with Scarborough Fair stuffing - Christmas Lunch 2013

Hot orange-glazed turkey with Scarborough fair stuffing – Christmas Lunch 2013

It’s time again for my list of memorable dishes from the past year and I must admit this year has been the hardest ever. I try to limit myself to calling out ten dishes a year (with a cheeky extra one to indulge myself – after all it is the holiday season) but this time I’ve upped it to 15 (plus one) for no other reason than that I’ve eaten so much good stuff there was no other option. If you’re interested, last year’s list is here.

This isn’t a list of the best dishes in the world, nor really is it a list of the best things I ate all year (although most of them certainly are). They are just the dishes that stuck in my mind.

There was a dish created specifically for me and my wife by two-Michelin-starred chef Yasunori Okada using ingredients sourced from our respective home towns. There was Hida beef rump rolled in ash, made by grilling Japanese leeks over oak charcoal for two days by Asia’s No. 1 chef, Yoshihiro Narisawa. There was a family Christmas feast hastily thrown together after a series of serious medical emergencies almost crushed us (don’t worry, everyone’s fine now *phew*), and even frog leg porridge cooked with Marmite and loads of fiery chillies (seriously) from Kuala Lumpur.

Eating each one of these dishes was a special moment for me this year. Thanks so much for letting me share them with you.

So here they are, in no particular order:

  1. Grilled Nagoya cochin chicken with yuzu kosho – Toriyoshi, Nagoya
  2. Pumpkin cooked in mead with white rice ice cream – Sixpenny, Sydney
  3. Babi guling – Pak Malen, Bali
  4. Sumi 2009 – Narisawa, Tokyo
  5. 25-year aged kombu stock – Takashi Okuda, Fukui
  6. Cheeseburger and root beer float – Gordie’s, Okinawa
  7. Marmite spicy frog porridge – Jalan Alor, Kuala Lumpur
  8. Daiginjo sake soufflé and salt soft serve – Ryugin, Tokyo
  9. Hairy crab and sea urchin nori roll with orange ankake – Kappo Okada, Sapporo
  10. Yang rou chuan – Roadside stall, Beijing
  11. Noto beef jibuni – Tsuruko, Ishikawa
  12. Kumara scones – Mavis Suckling, Dargaville, New Zealand
  13. Tea ceremony (Azaleas with their roots in a stone) – Kimura Soshin, Kyoto
  14. XO Sea – Quay, Sydney
  15. Eel spine kara-age – Kawatatsu, Kyoto
  16. 2013 Christmas lunch – At home, Sydney
Babi Guling - Pak Malen (Jimbaran), Bali

Babi Guling – Pak Malen (Jimbaran), Bali

Hairy crab and sea urchin nori roll with orange ankake - Kappo Okada, Hokkaido

Hairy crab and sea urchin nori roll with orange ankake – Kappo Okada, Hokkaido

(L to R) Sumi 2009, Sake souffle, Binchotan-grilled Nagoya cochin with yuzu kosho, White chocolate and strawberry pavlova (Christmas Lunch), Yang rou chuan, 25-year aged kombu stock, XO Sea, Candied pumpkin and rice ice cream.

(L to R) Narisawa’s Sumi 2009, Ryugin’s Daiginjo sake souffle with salt soft serve, Binchotan-grilled Nagoya cochin with yuzu kosho, White chocolate and strawberry pavlova (Christmas Lunch), Yang rou chuan, 25-year aged kombu stock, Quay’s XO Sea, Sixpenny’s  pumpkin in mead and rice ice cream.

Noto beef - Tsuruko, Ishikawa

Noto beef – Tsuruko, Ishikawa

Noto beef jibuni - Tsuruko, Ishikawa

Noto beef jibuni – Tsuruko, Ishikawa

Tempura (including eel spine kara-age) - Kawatatsu, Kyoto

Tempura (including eel spine kara-age) – Kawatatsu, Kyoto

Gin and tonic oysters (Christmas lunch) - At home, Sydney

Gin and tonic oysters (Christmas lunch) – At home, Sydney

Kumura scones - made by Mavis Suckling, Dargaville, North Island of New Zealand

Kumara scones – made by Mavis Suckling, Dargaville, North Island of New Zealand


Marmite spicy frog porridge - Jalan Alor, Kuala Lumpur

Marmite spicy frog porridge – Jalan Alor, Kuala Lumpur

Azaleas with their roots in a stone - Juko, Kyoto (served at tea ceremony)

Azaleas with their roots in a stone – Juko, Kyoto (served at tea ceremony)


Cheeseburger and root beer float - Gordies', Okinawa

Cheeseburger and root beer float – Gordies’, Okinawa


Christmas Lunch 2013 - At home, Sydney

Christmas Lunch 2013 – At home, Sydney




DFJ Episode 8: Osaka – Contacts

Sobakiri Masa (Soba Noodles)
A: Sobakiri Masa, Osaka Western Ren Honcho 1-chome, 16-12
T: +81-6-6225-3030

Mizuno Tanrenjo (Swordsmiths and Knifemakers)
A: Sakai District, Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture West 1D 1-27
T: +81-72-229-3253

Arata Chanko Nabe Restaurant (Sumo Cuisine)
A: Yonghe 3-5-20, Higashi Osaka, Osaka Prefecture
T: +81-6-6723-1213

Fish Sauce Roast Chicken

Fish Sauce Roast Chicken (1 of 1)


For more recipes and great food ideas, follow me on Instagram. For recipe videos, head over to my Youtube channel.

If you sometimes get sick of the same old roast chicken, the sticky Thai flavours in this bird will be a welcome change. Even if you don’t like fish sauce, don’t be deterred; all that’s left of that fishy, pungent taste after roasting is a thick, caramelised glaze that’s full of flavour.


1 whole 1.75kg free-range chicken

1 red onion, peeled and chopped into eighths


1/3 cup (80mls) fish sauce

1 whole coriander plant, roughly chopped (including one single root, and all stems and leaves), some leaves reserved for garnish

1 clove garlic, sliced

2 tbsp caster sugar

3 birdseye chillies, finely sliced

juice of ½ lemon


  1. Heat your oven to 180C (fan-forced). Mix all of the marinade ingredients together, and stir well to dissolve the sugar. Set aside while you prepare the chicken.
  2. Rinse the chicken under running water and pat it dry inside and out with paper towel.  [Update: Recent British NHS guidelines released after this post recommend against washing poultry before cooking.] With kitchen scissors or a heavy knife, cut down either side of the backbone of the chicken and remove the backbone completely. Remove the wishbone if you like, as this will make carving the breast easier after the chicken is cooked. Press down on the breast of the chicken to flatten it. (Discard the backbone or, if you prefer, chop it into large pieces and place the pieces into the roasting tray to add more flavor to the pan juices.)
  3. Work your fingers under the skin of the breast and thighs. Spoon the marinade over the inside and outside of the chicken, as well as between the skin and meat, getting as much of the solid ingredients in the marinade under the skin as you can. Place the onion in a roasting tray and lay the chicken skin-side up on top of the onion.
  4. Roast for 45 minutes, basting every 15 minutes. Remove the chicken when the skin is dark and caramelised (it will be darker than a normal roast chicken from the caramelised sugars), and the meat is only just cooked through. Rest the chicken in a warm place for at least 10 minutes.
  5. While the chicken is resting, pour the juices from the pan into a jug, leave the onions in the tray. Skim off any liquid fat. Pour the juices back into the roasting pan with the onions and place the pan over heat. Stir the pan juices together with the onions and scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Spoon the sauce and onions over the chicken, scatter with the reserved coriander leaves and serve.

This recipe appears in my second cookbook, Asian After Work.

AAW Cover - Web