Caribana Cooking: Jammin Caribbean Jerk Marinade
Published Thursday, August 1, 2013 7:55AM EDT Last Updated Thursday, August 1, 2013 7:56AM EDT
Chris De La Rosa from CaribbeanPot.com reveals how to make everyone's favourite, jerk chicken.
- 5 scallions (green onions)
- 5 sprigs of fresh thyme (about 1 tablespoon chopped)
- 2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 scotch bonnet peppers (seeded if you're concerned about raw heat)
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 1 onion
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
Notes: If you're using dried thyme, use about 1/2 table spoon. This makes about 3 cups of marinade and it can be stored in the fridge for about 1 month.
Basically all you'll be doing is making a puree with all the ingredients I mentioned above. So you'll need a blender or food processor.
Rough chop the scallions, peppers, garlic, onion and thyme and place in the food processor to make it easier to puree. Remember when working with these hot peppers to wear gloves (the natural oil is deadly). Also note that most of the heat is within the seeds and the membrane that surround the seeds. So to control the heat, discard those. However, for that true authentic Jamaican feel.. keep the entire peppers.
Now add all the other ingredients and pulse to start. Then run the puree speed for about 2-3 minutes until everything breaks down to a smooth consistency.
8 lbs Chicken
- Trim off excess fat and skin, then wash and drain the chicken pieces.
- In a large zip lock bag add the chicken pieces then pour in the marinade. Seal the bag and place it on a plate (in case it leaks) and let it marinate in the fridge overnight (or at least 2 hrs if you're in a rush).
- As your grill heats take the marinated chicken out of the fridge and allow it to come up to room temperature.
- Grill as you would normally grill chicken, but since there are sugars in the marinade I would suggest grilling on an indirect heat. The goal is to reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F (thickest part of the chicken) Typically I like to do my jerk chicken low and slow so my grill is usually set at about 300 F and I grill on the indirect heat (away from direct flame) for an hour plus. The final 10 minutes is when I go over the direct flames to develop colour heighten the overall flavours.
Notes: I love using whole chicken cut into 1/2 as you'll then have both white and dark meat for your guests. Personally I think dark meat like the thigh and drumsticks are better suited for this recipe though.
TIP. Add a cup of Caribbean lager (beer) or some fruit juice (pineapple, orange or apple) to the marinade after removing the chicken pieces from it. Then use this to baste the chicken pieces the first 45 minutes of grilling.
*This recipe works for 5-10 lbs chicken
Serve with some freshly cut lime wedges for an added zing!