Recipe Detail

Zambezian Chicken and Coconut Rice from Mozambique

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  • Brief Description

    A loved Mozambican dish known to have originated in the province of Zambezia from where it gets it\'s name. It\'s renowned for it\'s deeply marinated flavour coming from the magical combination of garlic, coconut milk, chilies and lemon juice. Usually this dish is served beachside with a portion of chips (French fries) and it\\\'s almost always paired with a cold beer (2M brand if you\'re wanting to keep it authentic). For those wanting a more \"homey\" version of this dish, a great pairing is to add coconut rice and a side salad. Admittingly, this dish is best cooked over coals for that extra punch of flavour but if you\'re pressed for time, an indoor grill or even your oven will work just fine. We recommend sharing with friends and family anytime of the year.

  • Main Ingredient

    Chicken; Rice

  • Category:  Poultry

  • Cuisine:  African

  • Prep Time:  135 min(s)

  • Cook Time:  45 min(s)

  • Recipe Type:  Private

  • Source:

  • Tags:

    BBQ Grilling Family Kid-Friendly Party Large groups Household

  • Notes:

    *measure your coconut milk and add however much water you need to be able to have double the quantity of your dry rice As the marinade contains lemon juice, you don't want to leave it for longer than 3 hours total as the chicken may become dry and unpleasant. If you want the recipe to have an extra kick, add more chilies to the marinade. If you happen to have some prawns, they're just as great in the same marinade with the same sides! On another note, if you're looking for a little extra work, you could grate fresh coconut (on a traditional coconut bench if you have one laying around) and pour warm-hot water over it and massage the fresh coconut milk straight out. Repeat this about 2 or 3 times to make sure you're getting every bit of the milk. Use this milk to replace the tinned version in this, or any other, recipe.

  • Posted By:  DHAPP

  • Posted On:  Mar 22, 2021

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Number of Servings:


  1. 1 whole - Chicken
  2. 1 cups - Lemon Juice
  3. 4 teaspoons - Garlic Minced
  4. 1 1/2 tablespoons - Dried/Fresh Chilies Minced
  5. 2 tablespoons - Olive Oil
  6. 1/2 cans - Coconut Milk
  7. - Salt and Pepper To taste
  8. 1 cups - Rice Basmati preferably
  9. 1 cans - Coconut Milk
  10. - Salt To taste
  11. 1 whole - Chicken
  12. 1 cups - Lemon Juice
  13. 4 teaspoons - Garlic Minced
  14. 1 1/2 tablespoons - Dried/Fresh Chilies Minced
  15. 2 tablespoons - Olive Oil
  16. 1/2 cans - Coconut Milk
  17. - Salt and Pepper To taste
  18. 1 cups - Rice Basmati preferably
  19. 1 cans - Coconut Milk
  20. - Salt To taste



1. Combine lemon juice, coconut milk, garlic, chilies, salt and pepper in a large dish that can hold your whole chicken;

2. Cut straight down the length of the chicken between it's breast bone to open and flatten it. Some brute force may be necessary to "crack" it's back to make sure it stays as flat as possible but in one piece;

3. Add the chicken to the marinade and make sure the whole chicken is well covered with the lemon and coconut sauce;

4. Set the chicken aside 2 hours at room temperature, turning it over every 30 minutes and basting with the sauce;

5. Place chicken on the braai (South African term for coal BBQ) turning and basting it every 10 - 15 minutes with the marinade sauce as it cooks;

6. The chicken is ready when you pierce it with a knife and clear juice trickles out. If it's still pink, chicken isn't ready;

7. Create a sauce from the leftover coconut and lemon marinade by thickening it on the stove and serve with the coconut rice.


1. Wash the rice in cold water until the water runs clear;

2. Add rice, coconut milk, salt and water* to a pot and bring to boil on med-high heat;

3. Stir occasionally;

4. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot;

5. Allow to simmer until all the liquid has reduced completely;

6. Remove from heat, use a fork to puff up the rice and let the rice sit covered for 15 minutes.

Serve with some homemade French fries and a simple lettuce, tomato and onion side salad or enjoy as is.
As we say in Mozambique, BOM APETITE!


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