My Famous Jerk chicken

There are some dishes that are guaranteed to put a smile on your face and some heat in your belly. My Jerk Chicken is one of those dishes.

The first time I went to Jamaica I was fascinated by the wide range of street food that was available and spent a great deal of time visiting local eateries with my family.

I remember, visiting a beach on the way back from Dunns River Falls, Coldplay’s Yellow was blasting out in the background and the smell of charcoal and spices filled the air.

There was a small restaurant bar with an outside grill that sold some of the best Jerk chicken I have ever had, they also did a mean Rum punch that was made with Appleton Estate and Wray and Nephew rum, all I can say is that it went down a bit too easily.

“Jerk” refers to the way the meat is seasoned and cooked, traditional Jerk chicken is cooked on an oil drum BBQ, some traditional recipes call for a dry spice mix which is good to use if you are grilling or putting on a BBQ. Seeing I oven cook my chicken I prefer to use a mix of the two.

To get the best results you ideally need to marinade the chicken overnight, I always use skinless chicken thighs just because they have more flavour (Skinless as I am trying to be healthy)

Preparing the Rub

For the wet rub you will need

2 Scotch Bonnets

75g Coriander

10g Fresh Ginger

3 Cloves Garlic

1 small Red Onion

Dried Chili Flakes (if you feel it needs an extra kick)

Good glug of olive oil and red wine vinegar

Put all of these ingredients into a food processor and blend.

Prepare the chicken thighs by scoring and seasoning with salt and pepper. Add two tablespoons of Caribbean Mild Curry Powder and a teaspoon of of Ground Pimento to the chicken. I use the Rajah brand as it is not as salty as other versions I have tried in the past.

Cover the chicken with the rub and make sure it’s all coated, the only way to do this is to get in there with your hands (I use plastic gloves as the turmeric stains your fingers).

Cover and leave in the fridge overnight or longer if you can.

To cook, place the chicken on a baking tray and cover with foil. Cook on a medium heat (usually around 180C) for 40 minutes and then take the foil off and finish cooking for a further 10 minutes (Check that the chicken is cooked by ensuring that there are clear juices coming out of the chicken)



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