Spring and Ayam Percik (Malaysian Flame Grilled Chicken)

September 06, 2013
Malaysian Flame Grilled Chicken

Ayam Percik, literally translated … means ‘Splash Chicken’…why so…I really don’t know but my guess is as follows.

but before... lets enjoy the beauty of 

Spring ...

Coral Flame Tree

Oh, give us pleasure in the flowers to-day;
And give us not to think so far away

As the uncertain harvest; keep us here
All simply in the springing of the year.


Oh, give us pleasure in the orchard white,
Like nothing else by day, like ghosts by night;
And make us happy in the happy bees,
The swarm dilating round the perfect trees.

Lake Monger

And make us happy in the darting bird
That suddenly above the bees is heard,
The meteor that thrusts in with needle bill,
And off a blossom in mid air stands still.


For this is love and nothing else is love,
The which it is reserved for God above
To sanctify to what far ends He will,
But which it only needs that we fulfil.

 ~Robert Frost (1915)

The above photographs were taken around Lake Monger, Perth. 
The sign of Spring with the Coral flame flowers in full bloom. 

 Malaysianbarbequed Chicken

Ayam Percik originated from Kelantan, a state in the Northeast of Peninsular Malaysia bordering Thailand. The chicken pieces (or whole) are marinated in half the sauce and cook over slow open fire. The remaining sauce will then liberally brush onto the chicken to keep it moist and from being charred.

Basting the chicken with the sauce causes the dripping sauce and fat/oil onto the open fire which generates tiny sparkles and splashes of oil. These tiny splashes are known as ’Percik’ (in Malay).
This is my take on Ayam Percik, it is quite laborious but the taste is well worth all the hard work.

Moist and spicy Malaysian Flame Grilled Chicken

Ayam Percik (Malaysian Flame Grilled Chicken)

Click to Print Recipe 

4 pieces of Maryland chicken (approximate weight 1.4kg)

Marinate the chicken
½ tablespoon coriander seeds
½ teaspoon fennel seeds
½ tablespoon cumin
½ teaspoon chilli powder
½ teaspoon turmeric

1-2 pieces lemongrass (approx 75-100g) – coarsely chopped
1 red onion or 150g in weight – coarsely chopped
15 g garlic
10 dried chillies –washed and soak in hot water
25g fresh turmeric
3 candlenuts
15g galangal
½ cup cooking oil
2 pieces tamarind rind
200ml coconut milk
1/4 cup sugar
Salt to taste
  1. Washed and pat dry the chicken pieces.
  2. Ground the spices and rub onto the chicken, both side and under the skin.
  3. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator. 
  4. Cooking the sauce
  5. Blend all the spices with 100ml of coconut milk (except tamarind rind) into a smooth paste. 
  6. Heat up oil in a saucepan or wok.
  7. Add the blended spices into the wok.
  8. Keep stirring and cook until fragrant and you are able to see traces of oil known as oil split.
  9. Add remaining coconut milk and tamarind rind.
  10. Keep stirring until the sauce thickens.
  11. Add sugar and salt to taste. Note that the sauce should be creamy, tangy, spicy and sweet.
  12. Spread half the sauce onto the marinated chicken, making sure that some goes under the skin too.  
  13. Marinate for at least 3 hours. 
  14. Pre-heat the oven to 200C
  15. Arrange the chicken pieces on baking tray in a single layer.
  16. Roast for 40-45 minutes.
  17. Then transfer the chicken to the Barbeque pit.
  18. Brush the chicken pieces with remaining sauce and cook for another 15-20 minutes in low fire or until the chicken is cooked and slightly charred.
  19. Serve with steam rice 
Note: I pre-cooked the chicken in the oven. As much I love the charred sauce but too much burnt/ carbon could be detrimental to our health.


  1. Ah spring, glorious spring! I love this season... Lovely pictures and mouthwatering dish.



  2. yada yada yada
    lapo lapo nengok..

  3. I am sure everyone loves spring ..... it is so beautiful with flowers blooming and even the birds chirping sounds beautiful too. Love this delicious dish......ayam percik.. though have yet to try but it sure taste awesome.

  4. Sedap nampak ayam percik ni.. Spring kat your side means autumn here soon.. alamak!