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Winter in Bakewell is generally dark, miserable and cold, so it was with great relief when spring announced itself last weekend with two days of glorious sunshine. Seeing the sun again got me thinking about holidays and travelling to far flung places; lying on golden sands under deep blue skies, and of course the exotic, tropical food experiences that inevitably accompany such locations. No meal screams summer to me like spicy jerk chicken! So I decided to whip up a batch of this Caribbean favourite. I sauntered off in the sun to the local market, where I picked up a monstrous amount of chicken to feed the five growing boys I live with, who all have huge appetites and often work as my guinea pigs. I marinated my chicken, left it overnight and oven baked it on a sunny Sunday afternoon (still a bit too chilly out to dust off the barbecue!).

AM:PM, our session IPA designed to be drunk all day long, seemed like the perfect beer to complement the spicy jerk chicken. The tropical hop character of the beer complements the dish perfectly and is incredibly refreshing, cooling the mouth off as the fiery scotch bonnet chillies deliver their intense, fruity kick. I can highly recommend serving this up with traditional Caribbean-style rice ‘n’ peas and a crisp salad. Gorgeous!

INGREDIENTS

Serves 4

  • 8 x chicken pieces – use a mixture of thighs and drumsticks
  • 3 x spring onions, roughly chopped
  • 2 x Scotch Bonnet chilli, deseeded
  • 5 x garlic cloves, roughly chopped into pieces
  • 2 x tablespoons of soy sauce
  • The juice of two limes
  • 1 x tablespoon ground allspice
  • 1 x teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 x teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 x tablespoon Muscovado sugar
  • ½ x teaspoon ground ginger
  • A handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
  • 1 x teaspoon salt
  • 1 x teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 x tablespoons olive oil

 

METHOD

  • Put the chillies, coriander, spring onions & garlic in food processor and puree.
  • Pour puree into a big mixing bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, mixing thoroughly to blend them all together.
  • Place the chicken in the bowl and use gloves to rub the marinade into the chicken, giving it a good coating all over.
  • Cover the bowl with cling film and refrigerate the chicken overnight if you have time, but for at least a couple of hours.
  • Place on oven tray and cook for roughly 30 minutes at 220°C.
  • Cook until skin is crispy and meat is cooked through (75°c).