Okay ya’ll…time for something spicy to get you out of that post-holiday sugar coma! This recipe, lifted from the ever-amazing Saveur website, is seriously no joke. Featuring a healthy eight habanero chilies, this dish will put hair on your chest, shoot you to the moon, knock your socks off, etc. The chiles, however, are not the most important part of the jerk recipe. The dried berry known as Allspice is the trademark ingredient here. Dubbed with it’s current name by English colonials, who supposedly thought it tasted of cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg, it is generally referred to as pimento in the West Indies (thanks, Wikipedia.)
Since Miss Curry does not currently have access to an outdoor grill, or to the traditional pimento wood needed for true Jerk authenticity, we used the oven broiler as a substitute, keeping in mind that it is essentially an upside-down grill. Perfect for eating island food when it is freezing/snowing on the East Cost of the U.S.
So, without further ado, we present to you Saveur’s very easy, very spicy, very worthwhile jerk chicken recipe. Use it to chase those winter blues away!
Jamaican Jerk Chicken
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup lime juice
4 tbsp. dark brown sugar
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. dried thyme
2 tbsp. soy sauce
4 tsp. ground allspice
8 cloves garlic
8 habanero chiles, stemmed
8 scallions, roughly chopped
2 shallots, roughly chopped
1 1″ piece ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
8 whole skin-on, bone-in chicken legs and thighs
1. Combine the oil, lime juice, sugar, vinegar, thyme, soy sauce, allspice, garlic, chiles, scallions, shallots, ginger, and salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor and process until smooth. Place chicken in a 9″ x 13″ baking dish and pour marinade over it; massage marinade into chicken, making sure to push it under the skin. Cover chicken with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
2. Build a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or heat a gas grill to medium-high. Alternatively, heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Place chicken on grill over direct heat and cook, turning occasionally, until it begins to brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer chicken to indirect heat, or reduce heat to medium-low, and continue cooking, turning occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 45 minutes. To serve, transfer chicken to a plate.
SERVES 6 – 8