Sweetly spiced chicken lollipops

The lollipoppiness of Stefan Gates' chicken comes from the way you turn the skinned drumstick half inside out, leaving a handle to hold as you eat the marinated ball of chicken at the other end
By Stefan Gates
Sweetly spiced chicken lollipops
  • Rating:
  • Serves: makes 8 drumsticks
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes plus marinating and cooling
  • Effort: easy


  • 8 chicken drumsticks, skinned

For the marinade

  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 5 cm ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, outer leaves removed and very finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 lime, zest and juice only
  • 4 tbsp clear honey
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 5. Preparing the drumsticks is a little fiddly the first time you try it, but just imagine youre turning them inside-out like a sock. Take a skinned drumstick and, using a small knife, cut and scrape away the meat from around the bone only at the thick meaty end, then push the meat up towards the thinner end and over the knuckle. It should remain still attached to the knuckle. Dont worry about making them look smart.

2. To make the marinade, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and mix together with a fork. Place your drumsticks in a bowl small enough for them to fit snugly, meat end down, then pour over the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes, and preferably 2 hours or longer.

3. Rip some foil to wrap around the bones so they dont burn, then turn the drumsticks in the marinade one last time and place them in a roasting tray. Roast for about 40 minutes (depending on the size of your drumsticks), checking them twice to ensure they havent dried out, and basting as needed.

4. While the drumsticks are roasting, pour the remaining marinade into a small saucepan and simmer for 2 minutes to make a dipping sauce, adding a splash of water if it seems too dry.

5. Check the drumsticks are cooked through, then remove from the oven, remove the foil and leave to cool for about 10 minutes until they can be held comfortably without burning little hands. Serve with the dipping sauce and red pepper and noodle stir-fry.

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