BBQ chicken Thai style (Gai Yung/Gai Ping ไก่ย่าง ไก่ปิ้ง)

A visit to the village always involves a lot of eating. When I was there a few days ago my wife Seerung decided she wanted some BBQ chicken. In Thai it is called Gai Yung ไก่ย่าง or around these parts because of the Laos influence it is also called Gai Ping ไก่ปิ้ง Now these local chickens are not how most of you prefer your chicken. These dead chooks are as tough as grandfathers leather belt that survived the war….. and that is the way they love it! In New Zealand my parents save Seerung their oldest and toughest chooks just for her!

I must admit when I first tried it many years ago I wasn’t all that impressed but the tough texture grows on you and served up with fresh hot sticky rice (ข้าวเหนียว) it is now a real treat. The kids love it as well.

When Seerung put in her request to the brother in law I thought I might take a few photos of the process and share them with you here.

First of all you need to catch the Chicken.

Then you need to cut its neck. They do this very neatly and not how I remember my mother doing it (head severed) as they want to collect the blood.

Draining the blood. They will use this to cook another type of dish.

Make sure your coals are lit so they will be ready in time.

Sister in law is plucking the now dead chicken in some hot water.

Brother in law starts on chicken number 2 while my daughter Marisah looks on with fascination.

More plucking.

Burning those last remaining feathers off.

Splitting it in half.

Everything gets eaten. Everything.

Cooking over the coals.

The finished product. Yummo!

My niece loved her intestines.

Did I mentioned that everything gets eaten?

The dogs will be happy.

5 responses to “BBQ chicken Thai style (Gai Yung/Gai Ping ไก่ย่าง ไก่ปิ้ง)

  1. Oh my. I think I could eat everything but the intestines. Thats seems so unclean.
    Great pictures!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Jon.

  2. Yummo? I think I’ve eaten everything chicken but the spagetti parts. I don’t suppose there cleaned out. It’s not chicken tripe is it? As a boy it seems my Mom did up the feet one time but I don’t remember how. We have a small fish here( pacific north west, usa) 6 in. x 1 in. called a smelt that gets smoked whole and eaten. Smokey and oily like Bacon. YUMMO!

  3. Smelt are a big delicacy in New Zealand. Caught on the West Coast of the South Island.

    Two years ago I had a group of North Vietamese across for a field trip. The food in North Vietnam is very tough-my teeth ache after I work there. The North Vietnamese love tough chewy meat. In Ubon I took them to many good restaurants and they seemed to enjoy the food. One day for lunch we stopped by the side of the road for Som Tum, sticky rice and Guy Yang. They loved it. Fingers and all, throw the bones under the table for the dogs to eat (not in Vietnam-no dogs in restaurants -they get eaten). Whenever I go back to work in North Vietnam they still talk about that meal. Soft tender meat is a no no.

    And I like the way the chicken gets killed. None of this off-with-your-head-stuff.

    Reminds me of what Barack Obama experienced in his first night in Indonesia as a 6 year old with his mother and new step father.

    I quote ” The man pulled the blade across the bird’s neck in a single smooth motion. Blood shot out in a long, crimson ribbon. He then tossed it high into the air. It landed with a thud, then struggled to its feet, its head lolling grotesquetly against its side, its legs pumping widely in a wide, wobbly circle. I watched as the circle grew smaller, the blood trickling down to a gurgle, until finally the bird collapsed, lifeless on the grass. Later, after eating the chicken stew, I laid alone under a mosquito net canopy, listening to the crickets chirp and remembered the last twitch of life that I’d witrnessed a few hours before. I could hardly believe my good fortune”.

  4. My old old chooks were never tough enough for Seerung! I always chopped the head right off, but didnt collect the blood (didnt have a recipe that used it!) but I never let the chook run around headless!

  5. Pingback: Thailand's best blog posts in May 2010

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