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Korean-style roast chicken


  • 1 handful of sesame seeds (200 grams)
  • 250 grams kimchi
  • 2 tablespoons gochujang paste
  • 2 tablespoons low-salt soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1.4 kilograms whole free-range chicken
  • 2 tablespoons runny honey
  • 2 coconut milk tins’ worth of self raising flour (500g), plus extra for dusting


  • 2 carrots
  • 4 spring onions
  • 2 fresh red chillies
  • 1 bok choi
  • 1/2 a Chinese cabbage
  • 2 limes
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 a teaspoon gochugaru (Korean red pepper powder)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4.
  2. Toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan for three to five minutes, or until golden and nutty.
  3. Put the kimchi, gochujang, soy sauce, rice vinegar and two tablespoons of the sesame seeds into a blender, and whiz until smooth.
  4. Place the chicken in a snug-fitting baking tray. Pour one third of the marinade over the chicken and rub it in to all the nooks and crannies. Roast for one hour 20 minutes, or until everything is gnarly and cooked through.
  5. Add the honey to the remaining marinade and blitz until combined. Pour half into a small bowl and set aside – this will be your dipping sauce. Keep the rest of the sauce for your glaze.
  6. For the buns, cut out 12 x 8 centimeter squares of greaseproof paper and rub each one with a little sesame oil to stop the buns sticking. Pour the coconut milk into a large mixing bowl, then add the flour and a good pinch of sea salt. Start mixing with a fork then get in there with your hands and knead until you have a soft, smooth dough – or do all this in a food processor.
  7. Tip the dough onto a flour-dusted work surface and roll into a sausage shape. Quarter it, then cut each piece into three to make 12 even-sized pieces and roll each into a ball. One-by-one, with a rolling pin, roll the balls into 10 centimeter x 12 centimeter ovals. Lay an oiled chopstick across the middle like a hinge, fold the dough in half and pull the chopstick out. Place each bun on a little rectangle of greaseproof paper ready for steaming.
  8. Remove the chicken from the oven and turn it off. Spoon over the reserved glaze to create another sticky layer and sprinkle over the remaining sesame seeds. Transfer to a plate and return to the oven to keep warm and tighten up the glaze while you cook the buns.
  9. Working in batches, place the buns on their parchment squares into a large bamboo steamer and pop the lid on. Place the steamer over a large frying pan or wok filled with 300 milliliters of boiling water and steam for eight to ten minutes, or until fluffy and cooked through.
  10. For the slaw, scrub the carrot, trim the spring onions and chillies (deseed if you like), bok choi and cabbage. Finely zest and juice the limes into a serving bowl, add a little sesame oil and a good pinch of gochugaru. Finely chop all the slaw ingredients, drop them into the dressing bowl and toss with your hands to dress.
  11. Shred the chicken and serve with the coconut buns, slaw and remaining sauce.