Chicken Wrapped in Banana Leaves

    1 hour 40 minutes

    This is a style of cooking which is common in Papua New Guinea. Chicken, plantain, sweet potato and coconut milk are baked together in banana leaf parcels.

    4 people made this

    Serves: 2 

    • 1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
    • 1 teaspoon barbecue sauce
    • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
    • 3/4 cup (180ml) coconut milk
    • 2 chicken drumsticks
    • 2 chicken thighs
    • 2 yellow plantains, peeled and cut into 2cm slices
    • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into thick sticks
    • 1 large fresh, unsplit banana leaf

    Preparation:10min  ›  Cook:1hour  ›  Extra time:30min marinating  ›  Ready in:1hour40min 

    1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
    2. Whisk together soy sauce, barbecue sauce, ginger and coconut milk.
    3. Place chicken drumsticks, thighs, plantain and sweet potato in a bowl and pour over the marinade. Marinate 30 minutes.
    4. Gently warm the whole banana leaf over a fire or gas burner until the leaf is pliable but not burnt, 3 to 4 minutes.
    5. Cut the leaf into four large squares, measuring at least 30 x 30 cm. Carefully cut four long, thin strips from the rib of the leaf, these will be used as 'string' to tie the packets later.
    6. Place a piece of chicken onto each banana leaf square and evenly divide the vegetables on top. Pour in any remaining marinade and fold the leaves around the chicken like you are wrapping a present.
    7. Securely tie with the rib strips and place the packets onto a baking sheet.
    8. Bake in preheated oven until the chicken is tender and no longer pink in the centre, about 1 hour. Check the packets occasionally to make sure they do not burn.

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    Reviews in English (3)


    I was looking for a recipe to use up the coconut milk I had leftover from making Thai noodles. I did not have any banana leaves but I did have foil packets. I did add a 1 tsp of curry paste to the marinade. It was wonderful. The chicken fell off the bone and my husband loved it. I can only imagine how much better it will taste when I try it with the banana leaves.  -  09 Mar 2008  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    I couldn't help it and added a little minced garlic with the ginger. I made it for a friend who grew up in PNG and he said it reminded him of home but didn't taste like the food in PNG because when he was there the food wasn't very flavorful (I blame the garlic). I thought it was tasty and fun (hard to wrap with banana leaves though). I used the extra coconut milk to boil with the rice, gave it a cool flavor.  -  17 Mar 2012  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    no flavor  -  05 Mar 2012  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)