Summer in Australia means it’s time to head outside and fire up the barbecue. This clever recipe hack helps tenderise the chicken, and it’s all thanks to the same parts of the yoghurt that are good for our health! The ‘good bacteria’ and the lactic acid they produce help ensure perfectly succulent drumsticks every time. I’ve added loads of spice and heat to this recipe, so serve it with a cucumber salad to soothe fiery tastebuds. Serves 4.

Written in conjunction with my mates at Lilydale Free Range.


For the drumsticks

8 Lilydale Free Range Chicken drumsticks
1 cup (250ml) plain Greek yoghurt
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp garam masala
½ ground turmeric
pinch black pepper
olive oil, to brush

For the dipping sauce

1 cup (250ml) plain Greek yoghurt
2 tb coconut cream
200g tinned tomatoes, drained
1 long red chilli, seeds and stalk removed
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 tb extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp honey
juice ½ lime
sea salt and black pepper, to taste

For the salad

6 Lebanese cucumbers, peeled
2 golden shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
small handful each of fresh coriander, mint, and dill, finely chopped
½ inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tb sesame oil
2 tb rice wine vinegar
black sesame seeds, to top


Combine all of the marinade ingredients—the yoghurt, garlic, paprika, garam masala, turmeric, and black pepper.

Make 1-2 deep scores in each of the chicken drumsticks, to help the marinade penetrate the meat.

In a bowl, coat the drumsticks in the marinade and cover. Leave in the fridge overnight.

The next day, remove the drumsticks from the marinade. Keep them covered, but allow them to come to room temperature before you cook them.

Meanwhile, make your dipping sauce by simply processing all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth. Taste, and season as needed.

Use a vegetable peeler, mandolin, or sharp knife to cut your cucumbers into ribbons. Combine with the shallots, coriander, dill, and mint.

Mash the ginger and garlic together in a mortar and pestle. Add the sesame oil and vinegar. Combine well, then pour over the salad.

Toss well, then sprinkle sesame seeds over the top.

Remove any excess marinade from the drumsticks, brush with olive oil, and barbecue over a high heat until cooked through. They’ll need about 25-30 minutes, and you should turn them every five minutes or so to ensure they’re cooked evenly.

Serve with a side of the salad—and, if you’d like, some wholemeal naan or pita— and don’t forget the spicy dipping sauce!

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