In an effort to get more protein into my diet, I’ve been looking for new ways to prepare chicken. Enter: Food & Wine’s Quick From Scratch Chicken Cookbook. I picked it up on sale at one of the closing Border’s stores (sniff sniff) a month or two ago, and so far it’s been a good cookbook investment. I’ve found the recipes to be inventive and easy to adapt to our tastes. For example, I used the sauce ingredients in the Jerk chicken as a base (giving me confidence that the dish wouldn’t be a total flop) and added some of my own flavors. I also subbed in honey for brown sugar.
I don’t have any pictures to go with this post. Well, I took some, but frankly this jerk sauce is not pretty. I fear that if you see it, you won’t want to make it. That sounds terrible, but just take my word on this one and give it a try. The flavors are strong and very spicy–if you don’t like a lot of heat, I recommend cutting back on the cayenne and chipotle chili powder. You’ll still get a good tang from the ginger and garlic. YUM.
In spite of its somewhat unsavory appearance, this recipe has one big thing going for it: it’s weeknight-friendly (oh yeah, and delicious). In fact, you could whip it up the night before and let the chicken marinate for up to 24 hours. Unfortunately it’s rare that I plan far enough ahead to marinate anything, so mine only got 30 minutes (which was sufficient). Also, the instructions below are for chicken cutlets, but you could easily double the sauce recipe and make bigger chicken legs or enough cutlets for a bigger dinner party.
Adapted from Food & Wine’s Quick From Scratch Chicken Cookbook
- 1/4 c olive oil
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 3-4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/2 tbsp thyme
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cayenne
- 1 tsp chipotle chili powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 and 1/2 tsp freshly-ground pepper
- 1 tbsp honey
- 6 chicken cutlets
- Puree all ingredients (except the chicken) in a blender. Arrange chicken in an oven-safe dish and coat with sauce (turn cutlets to coat both sides). Marinate for 30 minutes, or up to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cook chicken (in marinating dish) for 10 minutes, turn, and cook for another 10 or until there is no more pink inside of cutlets.
I served this with a side of chopped cucumbers and grape tomatoes, tossed in a little oil and vinegar. It was the perfect side to cool our mouths down from all the heat in the chicken!