Easy no-marinade caramelized garlic chicken leg

whole chicken leg

I used to nuke a lot of “Asian marinated drumsticks” when I was in high school in Christchurch, NZ. It’s sold at Countdown (one of the largest hypermarket chain) and I just put it in the microwave when I felt like a snack. I set it for 1 minute on high for each drumstick and it tasted really good…well, as far as microwave food can taste.

Now, I got thinking about that good ol’ comfort food that helped me through the cold winters and I decided to make my own version. The “Asian marinate” is nothing more than soy sauce and I reckon I could make a far better version. I managed to come out with a delectable dish – it’s so good I’m drooling as I write this. 😀

You will need:
Whole chicken leg
Dark sweet soy sauce
Light salty soy sauce
Sugar (a lot of it)

chicken leg

Chicken legs are an excellent cut for this dish. It has just enough of the fattier bits of the chicken for a whole meal. Now, when we cooked this for the first time we were both very hungry and didn’t feel like taking the time to marinate the chicken. That turned out to be an excellent decision. The no-marinade caramelized garlic chicken leg was born and here’s how it goes! 🙂

First, put the chicken leg inside the cooking pot and dump in the dark and light soy sauce. Add your 4 tablespoons (not teaspoons – tablespoons) of sugar and let the heat caramelize it for a bit.


Next, peel at least an entire bulb of garlic and put the cloves in whole. You need the entire chicken leg to be covered so add a bit of water if you need to. Let the chicken simmer in the pot for about 30 minutes.

simmering chicken leg

It’s now ready to serve! Just take out the chicken leg and pour a bit of the sauce on top of it. Remember to spoon out all the garlic, it tastes heavenly with it.

This method of cooking the chicken tastes even better than marinating it. The slow simmering process tenderizes and allows all the flavors to be absorbed into the chicken. It’s absolutely fabulous – sweet and garlicky. It goes really well with steamed rice and the sauce is to die for.

caramelized garlic chicken

Garlic fans would LOVE this. I can eat plates of rice with just the caramelized sauce and melt-in-your-mouth garlic cloves.

Just remember your breath mints after having this for dinner. smirk

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