Roast Chicken w/ Ginger and Soy-Whiskey Glaze

That’s what i call a good-looking chicken!

As you can tell, today is chicken day on Chef’s gone wild. Of course, you know it’s not your average chicken day when your chicken taste a bit like Peking duck…

So is it chicken or duck, you asked? Well, let’s say it’s a chicken wannabe duck but who cares really as long as it’s delicious and taste like chicken… or duck. No, no, don’t pull your feathers hair now, this ain’t fowl play! I already told you it’s a chicken… Okay, to be fair let’s call it a chicken who lives on the edge of duckiness… cuz it kind of taste like duck too – not that i want to confuse you or anything. I’m sure it’s not a test tube chicken with added duck extract, i only use free-range chicken… and duck. It’s just that… this particular chicken just couldn’t decide. Could it be the ginger and soy-whiskey glaze then? Ahh …you bet! A glaze that transforms a chicken into a Peking duck? A transvestite chicken!! That’s what it is!!

Pffewwwww… I’m glad i got this out. Be discret now, the chicken doesn’t know and you don’t want to hurt his feelings. It might get tough.

Ginger & Soy-Whiskey Glaze
The secret here is to baste the chicken while…

We interrupt this program for an important message.

…..!!??.. They must be cluckin’ jokin’?! Not on my blog! @%$#.. f @#$%ers!!Oh!…eh.. Thanks Mr President for clarifying, my readers were worried about that! hmmm. It’s an honor to have you here…err.. See my friends! That chicken is safe to eat and that’s all that matters. Enjoy!

Roast Chicken with Ginger and Soy-Whiskey Glaze
Recipe adapted from Simple to Spectacular by Jean-Georges Vongherichten
(serves 4)

  • 1/2 cup kosher salt (for the brine), plus more to taste
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • One 3-pound chicken
  • 1 cup roughly chopped ginger (don’t bother to peel)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Scotch or other whiskey
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1/4 cup canola oil


  1. Combine the 1/2 cup and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a large container with 4 cups of cold water to dissolve. Add the chicken and soak for 1 hour at room temperature.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450’F. Drain the chicken and pat dry. Stuff about 3/4 cup of the ginger into the chicken’s cavity, season the bird with salt and pepper, and truss it. Or at least tie up the legs. Combine the remaining ginger with the soy sauce, whiskey, the remaining 1 cup of sugar, and the garlic in a saucepan and bring to boil; simmer while you brown the chicken, then strain.
  3. Heat the oil in a large ovenproof skillet or roasting pan and turn the heat to medium high. when the oil is hot, brown the chicken on both sides, coloring one leg and half the breast at the time – it will take 5 minutes per side. Put the chicken on its back, baste it with the soy mixture, and put pan in the oven.
  4. Roast for 45min to 1 hour, basting every 10 minutes with the soy glaze, until dark brown. A thermometer inserted into its thigh should read 155’F. Remove the bird from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes before carving. Serve with pan juices.



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  • Nina’s Kitchen (Nina Timm)

    I’ve tried this “try to give your chicken the duck treatment”, but mine did not look half as good as yours.

  • Claire

    Hein? Du sel casher? Guérande se soulève, c’est l’insurrection!

  • April in CT

    That’s the best lookin chicken pretending to be a duck that I’ve ever seen. I’ll certainly rest better tonight after reading Bill’s announcement! If I could adapt this to use on the gazillion chicken breasts I have in my freezer my life would be complete.

  • Peter M

    Zen, it’s looks “real & spectacular”. I’m gonna have to give this a whirl…whiskey won me over!

  • Manggy

    That looks so yummy Zenman! I’ve seen a recipe for Cantonese chicken– it involved boiling red wine vinegar and drying the chicken for a few hours by an electric fan :) But this looks much easier and really good! Thanks also for sharing some of Vongerichten’s work– he’s not a very recognizable name here :)

  • glamah16

    In my line of work it wouldnt be unusual to come across a Tranvestie chicken. That was funny one you used. And I hear of some strange going ons in a neighboring state with chickens. Nevertheless We adore Peking duck, so Im definately doing this with his poorer cousin.Plus the whiskey is another excuse to go in my mans stash to irritate him.:-).

  • Bethany

    You crack me up every time :) That looks so delicious! I must give it a try!

  • Mike of Mike’s Table

    That chicken looks beautiful, and lol@peter’s comment. I really like the flavors you’ve got going on in the glaze…

  • Ann

    I want some. When can you come over?

  • Elle

    That’s one good looking chicken! And I’m so relieved to hear that is wasn’t had by the former President.

  • Alfie

    Great blog! I’m loving the food – and the commentary on life in ‘chef world’!

  • Big Boys Oven

    this roasted bird looks really good, I must try!

  • farida

    This chicken looks out of this world:)) Is she from Mars?:)) She is cute in that glaze:) No, seriously, I love the recipe and the picture is just mouthwatering!

  • Nicole

    That DOES look beautiful! And moist. My husband would even like this one. I think I have found my weekend meal this week!

  • beachlover

    wow!! very asian style cooking!! Your bird look lovely:)

  • beachlover

    oh! btw,I link your blog.Hope you don’t mind:)

  • Mary Coleman

    I ,personally, live on “the edge of duckiness.”
    It’s the only way to live!
    This chicken is divine.
    You’ve done it again!

  • Ryan Placchetti

    Did you take out the giblets and stuff it with puns?

  • Ben

    Oh I am hungry now! :-/
    There is a little something for you here

  • Lina

    that chicken looks perfectly cooked with crispy skin… drool…

  • Kevin

    That chicken looks so good. Nice an perfectly glazed and golden brown.

  • SteamyKitchen

    Hey I’m doing this transvestite chicken this weekend!

  • b

    Ooohh… can I use Jack Daniels? Can you see my ears perking up?! :) This looks incredible but I’m with the others… I am certain mine will not be as gorgeous looking as yours!

  • Mochachocolata Rita

    …and i thought ducks love pretending to be swans…now chickens follow suit (at least in your kitchen or not..the bird did a brilliant job looking deliciously yummy)

  • waliz

    chicken licken! fingers licking good!

  • doggybloggy

    who’s peeking? thats one pretty bird.

  • Brilynn

    Awesome looking chuck you’ve got there, (when chicken meets duck, you get chuck).

  • We Are Never Full

    um, this one is getting bookmarked. mine better look this mutha f-in good. I’m way impressed with that glossy-crunchy looking skin!

  • Cynthia

    You, I adore!

  • Jenny

    Another great looking dish from master chef. Really looks great.

    You mailing my million yourself? Great, I can’t wait, I need to go shopping.

  • cakebrain

    Mmmm. Peking chicken! The brining seems to have done its job of making the chicken really moist. Your pics are really juicy!

  • daphne

    Oh yum! That must be the best looking roasted chicken ever. The skin looks crisp and the meat tender!

  • taste memory

    save me the skin + cartilage and I’m good to go

  • chiff0nade

    That chicken looks almost as succulent as my 437-pound boyfriend “Big Bear” in his new CROWN!! (photo on my website).

  • Chicken & Waffles

    *Whew* It’s so glistening! I’m sure it’s very moist indeed. Who needs duck when a chicken gets the job done?

  • SteamyKitchen

    Made this tonight, well, a version of it. soy + cheap whiskey + garlic + ginger as marinade for wings.

    #$%!*@%Y!% awesome. Grilled at 10pm for a late snack

  • Tartelette

    I love that you have the power to turn a chicken into a duck! Super powers are hard to come by these days :)
    Awesome again…now I am all confused about what you’ll cook me on our first date (and if you say the M word….I’ll get mad…let me dream ok?!)

  • charlotte s

    wow! looks awesome! i do a soy-honey-ginger marinade/glaze all the time, but the addition of whiskey sounds intriguing! will definitely be trying this soon!

  • Kate / Kajal

    that is a really crispy looking skin.
    Thank God Clinton spared this one for us:)
    Making it peking style is really glorifying the chicken. i still cant do a decent job at home , and always opt for a take away … next time i’ll just call u.

  • MrsDocChuck

    @ SteamyKitchen above:

    Jaden, I have tried some of your recipes before and I was REALLY disappointed.

    Why are you promoting them (YOUR recipes) on THIS great blog?

    maybe we should stick to discussing the posted recipe . .. but, that’s just me.

  • Zen Chef

    Take it easy Mrs Docchuck.
    Spread jelly, not hate.
    This ain’t a war zone.

  • giz

    I had to look twice – it (the chicken) didn’t look real the first time – really beautiful – really really beautiful. Did I mention really???

  • White On Rice Couple

    “chicken wanna be duck…”, that funny! It looks so delicious, no matter what the identity!

  • Emiline

    I’m so late getting here! I’m sorry! Bill has probably packed up and left town by now.

    I love all of your recipes. I want to try this sometime. The chicken looks so moist…and that skin is perfect golden brown.

  • Psychgrad

    I’m not sure that I can make this chicken without the image of Bill Clinton and a bird. Kinda distburbing.

  • cakewardrobe

    Peking Chicken!?How come you have such big Asian influence in your fooood?? This is why I’m always back for more!!!

  • La Belette Rouge

    That chicken is screen lickin’ good. OMG that is a beautiful skin. It looks so good that I might actually print the recipe and lie to myself and say that one day I will make it.

  • canarygirl


  • Chef Erik

    Looks super yum! The sauce sounds like could be good with salmon or escolar.

  • AzAzura

    I am hungry already!I love any poultry that has been glazed yum, yum