Fast Five-Spice Roast Chicken

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 45 min

No need to wait until Chinese New Year to roast up this irresistible aromatic chicken. Use any cut you want – but bone-in breasts and budget-priced legs work particularly well. Rice is essential, of course, for soaking up the intensely flavoured braising liquid. Just scatter with lots of green onions and complete this low-cal dinner with bok choy or peas with shredded lettuce.


4 - 6 bone-in chicken pieces
1/4 cup (60 mL) soy sauce
1/4 cup (60 mL) sherry
1/4 cup (60 mL) mirin
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp (15 mL) ginger, fresh, minced
2 tsp (10 mL) Chinese five-spice powder
2 tsp (10 mL) sesame oil
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) black pepper, freshly ground


1 Preheat the oven to 375°F(190°C). Choose an oven dish with shallow sides just large enough to snugly hold chicken, such as a 9 x 13 inch (3 L) baking dish. Remove chicken skin or leave on as you wish. Measure the remaining ingredients into the dish and mix together.
2 Place chicken in the pan, turning to coat both sides. Then arrange bone-side up. Roast in the middle of the oven for 30 minutes, basting partway through. (If at any time the liquid in the pan seems to be drying up, add a little water to avoid burning.) Then turn chicken, meaty side up, and continue roasting until temperature taken with an instant read thermometer in the thickest part of the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C), about 15 to 20 minutes. Baste occasionally during this time.
3 Remove chicken to dinner plates and spoon enough pan sauce over each to moisten. Pour the remaining into a bowl or pitcher for adding when wanted for dipping.