Barbecue ChickenSione Taulanga married our niece Sarah. We’ve enjoyed his barbecue chicken at family parties.  So we called his house to get the recipe.

“He doesn’t have a recipe.  He just makes it,” explained his wife.

He only uses four ingredients for the marinade and makes it by taste.  So we went to work in our test kitchen.  We think this version is very good.

Dennis and Merri Ann Weaver


2 cups soy sauce
3/4 cup brown sugar
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons finely grated ginger plus any juice created by grating
10 to 12 pieces of cut up frying chicken


  1. In a large bowl, stir the soy sauce and brown sugar together to dissolve the sugar.  Add the minced garlic and ginger.
  2. Set aside 1/4 cup of the marinade for basting.
  3. Pour the remaining marinade over the chicken and refrigerate it overnight.  There should be enough marinade to cover the chicken.
  4. Cook the chicken on the grill or broil it in the oven turning once halfway through and basting just before the meat is done.

Cook’s Notes

  1. Sione doesn’t use grated ginger; he wrings the juice from fresh ginger by twisting it in kitchen cloth.  Grating is a simplified method and we think it works just fine.
  2. In our testing in the oven, the chicken was done in 12 to 14 minutes on each side. Cooking times will vary depending on how far the chicken is from the heating element.  On the grill, it should be done in eight to ten minutes on each side.
  3. Baste the chicken just before it is done.  With the high sugar content in the basting marinade, it will burn easily.

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