Ingredients

  • Serves 4 people
  • 4 pcs chicken leg (120 g each, bone in)

  • 1 large tomato (chopped)

  • 3 stalk lemongrass (bruised)

  • 10 large red chili

  • 2 shallots

  • 7 cloves garlic (crushed)

  • 120 galangal (sliced)

  • 40 g ginger

  • 15 g fresh turmeric

  • ½ tbsp belacan

  • 1 tbsp coriander powder

  • ½ tsp cumin powder

  • 2 ½ tbsp white sugar

  • 2 ½ tbsp salt

  • 1 L + ¼ cup water

  • vegetable oil

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Recipe Courtesy of
Asian Food Network

Ayam Penyet

{{totalReview}}
If you love chicken, why would you smash it? The only justifiable reason is to create this unique Asian dish from Java, Indonesia that has spread across Asia and is getting popular across the world as well. A crispy yet tender chicken dish that is quick, easy, and served with a delicious chili paste so you can spice it up to your liking. Best served with steamed rice and usually complemented with simple Indonesian sides including fried tempe (soy protein).
  • Easy
  • 20 min
  • 50 min
  • 15 min
  • 4 steps
  • 16 Ingredients
  • Easy
  • 4 steps
  • 16 Ingredients
  • 20 min
  • 50 min
  • 15 min

Log in to watch this premium content and more!
Recipe Courtesy of
Asian Food Network

Ayam Penyet

{{totalReview}}
If you love chicken, why would you smash it? The only justifiable reason is to create this unique Asian dish from Java, Indonesia that has spread across Asia and is getting popular across the world as well. A crispy yet tender chicken dish that is quick, easy, and served with a delicious chili paste so you can spice it up to your liking. Best served with steamed rice and usually complemented with simple Indonesian sides including fried tempe (soy protein).
  • Easy
  • 20 min
  • 50 min
  • 15 min
  • 4 steps
  • 16 Ingredients
  • Easy
  • 4 steps
  • 16 Ingredients
  • 20 min
  • 50 min
  • 15 min

Ayam Penyet

If you love chicken, why would you smash it? The only justifiable reason is to create this unique Asian dish from Java, Indonesia that has spread across Asia and is getting popular across the world as well. A crispy yet tender chicken dish that is quick, easy, and served with a delicious chili paste so you can spice it up to your liking. Best served with steamed rice and usually complemented with simple Indonesian sides including fried tempe (soy protein).

Ayam Penyet originated from Indonesia but it has quickly become popular across multiple locations in Asia from Singapore, Brunei, Malaysia and more. It is Javanese for “smashed chicken”. 

Today, Ayam Penyet is listed by CNN’s Catherine Ling as one of the “40 Singapore foods we can’t live without”. And it is no surprise why some people cannot live without it, the juicy deep-fried chicken with smashed batter bits and tangy sambal is a sinful delight. When you pair it with polished white rice, you can have an explosion of flavour. 

While there are plenty of places to satisfy your Ayam Penyet cravings, why not try your hand at it?

Believe it or not, cooking Ayam Penyet is not as daunting as it seems. Check out our recipe below! 

Frequently Asked Questions about Ayam Penyet?

How many calories are there in Ayam Penyet?

On average, one plate of Ayam Penyet contains 650 calories. However, you could easily reduce your caloric intake by cutting the amount of rice per plate or cooking a small piece of chicken. 

You could also swap Jasmine white rice for brown rice for a more filling meal. 

Is Ayam Penyet spicy?

The spiciness of Ayam Penyet comes from the chili peppers. Traditionally, Ayam Penyet is meant to be enjoyed with sambal for an extra kick of flavour. 

However, if you dislike spicy foods, you could reduce the number of chillies and add more condiments like garlic and ginger for more flavour.

But for individuals who love spicy food, feel free to add more chili peppers. You could also swap the large red chilis with bird’s eye chili. 

How do I ‘smash’ the chicken? 

There are a couple of ways you could do the smashing:

  • Follow the recipe and press firmly for battered bits

  • Place chicken in a ziploc bag and smash it with a pestle to loosen the flesh 

Which part of the chicken should I use?

Most Ayam Penyet recipes use the chicken thigh fillet. But you could also use other parts like chicken breast or even a whole chicken. Just note that cooking time might differ depending on how you portion the chicken. 

How can I make this dish healthier?

Ayam Penyet probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when it comes to healthy food. But there are some ways you could make the dish healthier:

  • Fry chicken in an airfryer 

  • Reduce amount of sugar added 

  • Use chicken breast 

Tips to Make a Smashing Good Ayam Penyet

  1. Don’t be afraid to break the crust to check doneness: since you will be smashing the chicken anyway, you can easily check the doneness of the chicken by taking a peek under the crust.

  2. Do not refrigerate chicken: after frying the chicken, make sure that it is at room temperature as cold chicken could change the temperature of the oil and you might end up with a soggy mess. 

Feel free to use your hands to coat the chicken in the turmeric powder mixture: this allows you to rub the mixture into the chicken.

Instructions

  1. Cook chicken leg in spices and herbs

    • In a pot on medium heat, bring to a boil 1 L water and add bruised lemongrass, galangal slices, crushed garlic, fresh turmeric, ginger, 1 tbsp coriander powder, ½ tsp cumin, 2 tbsp white sugar, 2 tbsp salt and chicken leg.
    • Let it simmer for 25 minutes until the chicken is completely cooked.


  2. Make chili paste

    • In a blender, blend large red chili, shallots, belacan, ½ tbsp white sugar and ½ tbsp salt until smooth.
    • In a pan on medium heat, fry blended paste for 5 to 7 minutes until fragrant.
    • Once fragrant, stir in chopped tomato and set aside.

    | You can adjust the spiciness level of chili paste by adding or removing the amount of large red chili or adding chili padi

    Make chili paste


  3. Pat dry and coat chicken in turmeric powder mixture

    • Once chicken is cooked, remove from the pot and pat dry with a paper towel. Let it cool for 5 minutes
    • In a large bowl, mix 1 tbsp turmeric powder and ½ tsp salt. Coat chicken in turmeric powder mixture.
    Pat dry and coat chicken in turmeric powder mixture


  4. Deep-fry and smash chicken

    • In a separate pot, heat up enough vegetable oil for deep-frying. Once oil is hot, deep-fry chicken leg for 2 to 3 minutes until golden brown and crispy.
    • Place deep fried chicken onto paper towel lined plate to drain excess oil and repeat for remaining chicken thighs.
    • Place chicken on a clean working surface or chopping board and use the side of the knife to push down on the chicken.

    | Best eaten with steamed rice, cucumber slices, fried tempeh and fried tauhu

    Deep-fry and smash chicken


Plate and Serve!

Transfer deep fried smashed chicken into a serving plate or dish and serve with chili paste on the side or on the chicken. Serve hot.

Plate and Serve!

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    Ingredients
    • Serves 4 people
    • 4 pcs chicken leg (120 g each, bone in)

    • 1 large tomato (chopped)

    • 3 stalk lemongrass (bruised)

    • 10 large red chili

    • 2 shallots

    • 7 cloves garlic (crushed)

    • 120 galangal (sliced)

    • 40 g ginger

    • 15 g fresh turmeric

    • ½ tbsp belacan

    • 1 tbsp coriander powder

    • ½ tsp cumin powder

    • 2 ½ tbsp white sugar

    • 2 ½ tbsp salt

    • 1 L + ¼ cup water

    • vegetable oil

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