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Southern barbecue chicken drumsticks with mop sauce and potato salad

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Southern barbecue chicken drumsticks with mop sauce and potato salad.

By Emma Knowles
  • 30 mins preparation
  • 30 mins cooking plus marinating, cooling
  • Serves 4 - 6
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Southern barbecue chicken drumsticks with mop sauce and potato salad
This Lexington-style barbecued chicken gets extra tang from the trademark vinegary mop sauce it's basted with while it's cooking. You could use any chicken pieces on the bone, but we've gone for drumsticks for their sheer pick-up-and-eat deliciousness. Start this recipe a day ahead to marinate the chicken.


  • 375 ml (1½ cups) apple cider vinegar
  • 50 gm brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp dried chilli flakes
  • 3 tsp ground chilli
  • 2 tsp freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 12 chicken drumsticks
  • 1 kg kipfler potatoes, scrubbed
  • 80 gm mayonnaise
  • 40 gm sour cream
  • ½ Spanish onion, coarsely grated
  • Finely grated rind and juice of 1 lemon, or to taste
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • ½ cup each coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley and dill
Mop sauce
  • 185 ml apple cider vinegar (¾ cup)
  • 2 tbsp apple juice
  • 2 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (such as chipotle)
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes


  • 1
    To marinate the chicken, mix vinegar, brown sugar, chilli flakes, ground chilli, white pepper, garlic and 3 tsp sea salt flakes in a non-reactive container. Add chicken, turn to coat well, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or preferably overnight for flavours to develop.
  • 2
    For potato salad, cover potato well with cold salted water in a large saucepan, bring to the boil over medium-high heat and cook until tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife (15-20 minutes). Drain, then, while still warm, peel, thickly slice and set aside to cool.
  • 3
    Mix mayonnaise, sour cream, onion, lemon rind and juice and garlic in a large bowl and season to taste. Add potato and herbs and stir to coat well. Refrigerate until required.
  • 4
    For mop sauce, combine ingredients in a bowl, season to taste and set aside in 2 separate bowls.
  • 5
    Heat a barbecue to medium-high heat. Remove chicken from marinade and barbecue, turning and basting occasionally with mop sauce from one bowl, until browned and cooked through and juices run clear when drumsticks are pierced (8-10 minutes; discard any mop sauce remaining from bowl used for basting). Serve hot with potato salad and second bowl of mop sauce.


Drink Suggestion: Powerful spicy red such as a zinfandel. Drink suggestion by Max Allen