How to Cook Ayam Pongteh

I’d never had Ayam Pongteh – a Nyonya dish that originated not in Penang but in Malaysia’s other Nyonya hub of Melaka. It was one of those recipes I’d come across many times over the years of learning my craft but frankly I think the reason I never attempted it was because it looked almost too easy to be worth trying.

Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-La’s Executive Chef Adrian Lim did the cooking as per the last time (he’s quite a character in person – a typical straight-talking and ultimately very personable Hokkien).



2 shallots, chopped
5 cloves garlic, chopped
50ml cooking oil
50gm fermented soya bean sauce
20ml dark soy sauce
10ml soy sauce
20g palm sugar, chopped
1.2kg chicken (about 16 pieces)
50g boiled potatoes
100ml water
5g salt to taste


1. Pound shallots and garlic into a coarse paste. Set aside.
2. Heat oil over medium heat, add shallots and garlic paste and fry for about 2 minutes.
3. Add soya bean sauce, dark soy sauce, and palm sugar.
4. Add chicken and potatoes and the 3 cups of water. Bring to a boil.
5. When the water boils, reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour or until the chicken is tender.
6. Season with salt and soy sauce to taste. Serve hot with steamed rice.

Ayam Pongteh

Ayam Pongteh, Golden Sands Resort by Shangri-la in Penang

Baby Noah decided to be extra clingy just minutes before we were due to start filming

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