Friday, July 4, 2014

Jerk chicken

Tonight's menu
Jamaican jerk chicken
Island rice and beans
Orange spiced carrots
Jamaican jerk chicken with Island rice and beans and Orange spiced carrots
Jerk style of cooking means Jamaican BBQ. Traditionally chicken and pork are cooked with the jerk seasoning which gets its distinctive taste from allspice and scotch bonnet peppers. Jerk seasoning could be made as a dry rub or a wet marinade and uses several spices as listed below. Traditionally Jerk meat was cooked in smoked pit fires imparting a distinctive smokey taste. Over time this technique evolved and oil barrels were used as smokers to save time.

You can use jerk seasoning to marinate any kind of meat. The longer the meat sits in the marinade the better it tastes. I would recommend overnight. Serve it with a side of rice and beans cooked in coconut milk and orange spiced carrots for a complete exotic experience.

Jerk Chicken

8 chicken drumsticks
splash of rum(optional)
1 onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic
2 scotch bonnet peppers (or less as per your spice quotient)
4 stalks green onion, chopped
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tbsp vinegar
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp allspice
1 tsp dry thyme
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste
  1. Take all the ingredients for marinade in a food processor and blend to form a smooth paste. Add a splash of rum and mix well. 
  2. Marinate chicken pieces in this marinade for a minimum of 4 hours or overnight. 
  3. Grill the drumsticks on medium high, turning once till cooked through and crisp. 
  4. Serve with rice and carrots (recipe below) 
Jamaican jerk chicken with Island rice and beans and Orange spiced carrots
Orange spiced carrots

3/4 cup fresh orange mango juice
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
1/4 tsp fresh black pepper
3 cups shredded carrots
Chopped fresh coriander
  1. In a sauce pan combine the orange juice, sugar, ginger and pepper. Bring to boil and cook for 2-3 minutes, swirling the pan to dissolve the sugar. 
  2. Stir in the carrots, reduce heat to medium, and cook 3-4 minutes, until the carrots are cooked but firm. 
  3. Remove carrots from the pan, and sprinkle with parsley and coriander. 
  4. Serve hot, at room temperature, or cold.

Coconut Rice and Beans

1 cup rice
1 tbsp oil or butter
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1 can black beans or red beans, rinsed and drained
  1. Add butter or oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in chopped onion and garlic, cook until soft, about 3 minutes. 
  2. Stir in rice and mix to coat each grain with butter. Pour in the coconut milk and water. Season with pepper and salt. 
  3. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until the liquid has been absorbed and rice is tender, about 15-18 minutes. 
  4. Stir in the black beans and cook for a few minutes until hot.

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