I was thinking of what to make for dinner and thought of jerk chicken- but then realized it would be something my daughter will not enjoy since it is usually quite spicy. I thought maybe I could eliminate the scotch bonnet peppers that are one of the key ingredients in jerk chicken. Jerk is a style of cooking native to Jamaica. There are lots of rubs out there to try but nothing like a fresh homemade concoction. The other key ingredient is allspice. I happen to have it in my pantry so there wasn’t much to buy from the super market except for the chicken. I wasn’t sure how the dish would taste without the spice, but decided to go ahead and take a chance. When I was looking at different recipes, I realized the chicken should ideally be marinated at least 24 hours- so that is what I did. This is a good dish to marinate on a Sunday- all you have to do is grill/broil it the next day- doesn’t take long at all. I also made a fast and fabulous mango relish to go with the chicken as well as a quick couscous dish! I love making couscous- it takes all of five minutes to put together and the sky is the limit with the ingredients you can add- recipes of both the dishes to follow the next two days! My daughter is quite used to eating the chicken tikkas I make- they are her favorite- so I thought the jerk chicken will be quite similar in looks if not in taste. Well, she had a very skeptical look on her face but she did end up enjoying it. She ate the whole meal including the chicken, couscous and even the mango relish!
- 1pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 1 big spring onions, or 3-4 regular green onions
- 3 garlic cloves
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 clove, crushed
- 1 teaspoon allspice
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 limes, juiced
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 teaspoons salt
Puree all the ingredients, except the chicken, in a food processor until smooth. Pierce the chicken with a fork to make holes. Place the chicken in a large Ziploc plastic bag and pour the marinade in. Place in refrigerator for 24 to 48 hours. Preheat grill or oven on broil. Grill chicken on each side for 5 to 6 minutes or until cooked through. If using oven, broil each side till golden brown, about 7 to 8 minutes or until cooked through.