Lechon Manok marinated in choice seasonings and cooked in a turbo broiler to golden perfection! This Filipino-style roasted chicken is tender, juicy, and delicious to the bone!
I’ve been cooking up a frenzy this past couple of weeks, testing and trying out new recipes for our Christmas series, but if truth be told, we might not even cook at home for Noche Buena. Other than making buko salad, we’re planning just to buy ready to serve food and enjoy a laid back holiday.
My mom thinks I should take a break from kitchen work and suggested we order a small tray of baked macaroni and a dozen pork BBQ from a family friend who caters as well as pick up a couple of rotisserie chicken from Chooks. Which is a shame, in my opinion, because I happen to make a pretty badass baked mac and lechon manok are so easy to prepare, two wouldn’t take too much work at all.
I guess I have time before Christmas Eve to rethink the plan. I just might surprise mother dearest with a homecooked feast instead. 🙂
- Calamansi juice
- Fish sauce-adds umami flavor
- Soy sauce
- Brown Sugar
- Minced garlic-fresh is best but garlic powder will work in a pinch
- Sliced shallots
- Brown sugar
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Lemongrass-stuffed into the cavity to infuse flavor and aroma
The longer the soak is NOT better! Do not marinate the chicken for too long as the acids in the marinade might break down the meat and affect the texture.
Litsong Manok is a classic Filipino chicken dish traditionally spit-roasted over hot charcoal. While this method does impart unbeatable fragrance and taste, it’s not always feasible for the home cook.
A turbo broiler does a fine job mimicking the tender, juicy, and golden lechon you can find at popular chain restaurants. You can also use the rotisserie function of your convection oven or roast in a conventional oven. Set the chicken on a roasting rack and NOT in a baking dish to allow heat circulation and to keep the rendered fat from pooling around the meat.
This Filipino-style rotisserie chicken can be served as an appetizer or as part of a meal. It’s commonly enjoyed with steamed rice or puso, which is a type of boiled rice wrapped in woven coconut leaf casings.
The flavorful morsels are accompanied by dipping sauces such as toyomansi (calamansi and soy sauce), spiced vinegar, or lechon sauce. Check out the homemade recipe below!
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1/2 small onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1/3 cup vinegar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 4 to 5 roasted chicken livers, mashed (about 1 cup)
- 1/3 cup breadcrumbs
In a saucepan over medium heat, heat oil. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened.
Add vinegar and water and bring to a boil, uncovered, for about 2 to 3 minutes to cook off the strong vinegar taste. Add sugar, salt, and pepper and continue to cook, stirring until sugar is dissolved.
Add mashed liver and cook, stirring regularly until well-combined. Add breadcrumbs and cook, stirring well, until sauce is thickened as desired. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Give this lechon na manok recipe a try! It’s so easy to make at home and more budget-friendly, you might never buy from the restaurant again. More recipes using whole chicken? Below are my favorites!
- Pinaupong Manok– steam-cooked in a bed of rock salad. So moist and flavorful!
- Tiniim na Manok-slow-cooked in pineapple juice and other seasonings. With a sweet and savory gravy you’ll love with steamed rice
- Fried Chicken a la Max’s Restaurant-brined, steamed and double-fried to golden and crispy perfection
- 1 whole chicken (about 4 to 5 pounds)
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup calamansi juice
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 head garlic, peeled and minced
- 4 shallots, peeled and minced
- 1 stalk lemongrass
- Remove giblets and any extra fat from inside the chicken. Under cold running water, rinse chicken well and pat dry.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine calamansi juice, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
- Add minced garlic and chopped shallots and stir to distribute.
- Add chicken to the marinade and massage until evenly coated.
- Cover and refrigerate for about 4 hours to overnight, turning chicken a few times every 2 to 3 hours.
- Remove chicken from the refrigerator and drain from marinade, reserving marinade.
- With a knife, cut the thinner top portion of the lemongrass stalk and the very woody base. Peel off the tougher outer layers to get to the tender part of the stalk. With the back of a knife, pound the stalk a few times.
- In a saucepan, bring the marinade to a boil for about 3 to 5 minutes or until reduced and thickened.
- Cut the lemongrass into about 3-inch lengths and stuff into the chicken cavity.
- Gently place the prepared chicken with the breast side down on the turbo broiler rack (use the lower metal rack).
- Brush the chicken liberally with the reduced marinade and broil at 180 C/350 F for about 20 to 30 minutes, Occasionally brush with marinade for extra flavor.
- Carefully turn the chicken to breast side up and liberally brush with the marinade. Broil for about another 20 to 30 minutes or until a thermometer inserted at the thickest part reads 165 F. Occasionally brush with marinade for extra flavor.
- Turn the temp up to 215 C/420 F and continue to cook for another 10 to 15 minutes or until chicken is golden and nicely charred.
- Carefully remove from turbo broiler and place on a serving platter or chopping board, Allow to stand for about 5 minutes before slicing.