This dish was inspired by the traditional Laotian lemongrass grilled chicken (ping gai). In the predominantly ethnic Laotian region of Northeastern (Issan) Thailand it is called gai yaang
We took our inspiration from that and then we mixed it with beer can chicken. Thats pretty much it.
We enthusiastically bought the contraptions for beer can chicken a few years ago, but we could not taste any beer flavor unless we marinated the chicken in beer first. So, we now use empty cans half filled with water and we find it works just the same. In this recipe we wanted something sweet like a syrup, so we chose cola.
Serves 4 adults
Wash and peel the outer layer of the lemongrass stalk, finely slice it. Pound it with the garlic cloves and salt into a paste in a mortar and pestle. Pictures of this process can be found in our Lemongrass Beef Skewers.
In a bowl, mix together the lemongrass-garlic-salt paste, oyster sauce, Roasted Garlic and Peppers seasoning, Jeow Bong, cola and Spicy Pineapple Sauce.
Put both chickens in a large ziplock bag and pour marinade over. Close the bag and make sure the chicken is fully coated in the marinade. Place in the fridge 5 hours or overnight.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and set a single rack on the lowest position in your oven.
Using empty pop cans filled half-full of warm water, put the pop can in the beer can chicken rack and fit your chicken cavity over the can.
We have two different racks, but we prefer the one with the bowl on the bottom because it catches the drippings, making it easier to make gravy. We poured the extra marinade into the bowl, and cooked it along with the chicken to make the sauce, but you could reduce it in a sauce pot on top of the stove.
Place on the baking sheet and cook the chicken about 2.5 hours at 350F or 175 C, or until the internal temperature reaches 180 C and the skin is golden.
When you remove the chicken from the oven, let the chicken cool for 5-10 minutes before removing from the can. Be careful of the steam and the hot liquid in the can when you are pulling it out of the chicken.
Cut in half, pour sauce or gravy over, and serve.