Sunday Supper: Grilled Jerk Chicken with Okra Over Rice

20110912-090318.jpgI have been been a bit bored with the same old dishes and inspired to try new flavor profiles including various curries, Indian and today’s recipe. I got the Epicurious app on my phone to explore new flavor profiles. Once I find a recipe that I like, the app will generate a shopping list that allows me to check off items as I shop. It’s my new favorite tool.

With most jerk recipes, the meat will need to marinade for at least 4 hours. I marinaded the chicken for 24 hours in the jerk and had B grill it on the Weber over really hot coals. Typically jerk is cooked slower than my version but I wanted a touch of the charred or blackened flavor to come through. You can use any kind of meat instead of chicken and I added cilantro to the jerk which is also non-traditional and can be opted out if you choose. I have never made okra before and searched various recipes to find consistency. As always, I try to stick with a Southerner for that kind of recipe.

What you Will Need:

Chicken Thighs 2-3 per person
White rice
16 oz. Chicken stock
Fresh okra (2-3 per person) slice into 1/2 in slices ends removed.
8 oz. Canned, diced tomatoes
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 T. Olive oil
Garlic powder
Onion powder
Paprika
Salt & pepper
***See seasoning note below

Cilantro Jerk Marinade:

Fresh cilantro sprigs, stemmed (optional)
2-4 scallions, chopped
4 large garlic cloves, minced (reserve one for the okra)
1 small white onion, diced
2-3 fresh habanero chile, stemmed and seeded to taste (4-5 if you are bold)
1/4 c. fresh lime juice
2 t. Low sodium soy sauce
3 T. olive oil
1 T. packed brown sugar
2 t. black pepper
1.5 t. tablespoons salt
3/4 t. freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 t. cinnamon
2 t. ground allspice
1 T. fresh thyme leaves

In a food processor, add all of the above ingredients under marinade and blend until smooth. Pour into a large ziplock bag and add chicken. Refrigerate for minimum four hours turning over at least once. Allow meat to come to room temp at least one hour before grilling.

***Seasoning note: I spiced the okra as I went along using salt, pepper, a touch of garlic and onion powder and a sprinkle of paprika.

Prepare your grill. For the okra, in a large frying pan over medium high heat, add 1/2 diced yellow onion and sauté 2-3 minutes. Add sliced okra and sauté another 3 minutes. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder then pour tomatoes over the top and stir to combine. Allow to come to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and let simmer for 20 minutes. Contiye ro taste and flavor as needed. Begin cooking your rice in chicken stock according to the instructions. Not all rice is the same so it’s important to follow the directions closely for the best results.

The coals should be nice and hot, remove chicken from marinade and place directly over coals and cook for 5 minutes per side, 10 minutes total per thigh. ***Note: cook time is for very hot coals with direct heat and will vary with different cuts or types of meat.
Turn once clockwise per side to get cross sear marks. Serve over white rice with okra on the side.

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