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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Jerk Chicken Wraps with Banana Rice and Biting Kiwi Sauce

My honeymoon in Jamaica was my first exposure to Jerk Chicken. Endless legs and thighs expanded my own to the tune of 5 or 10 pounds in a week. Twelve years later, I'm revisiting the classic with a twist of my own (albeit in slightly healthier portions).

Unlike typical jerk chicken cooked over fire, I wanted to pan fry. This was purely a matter of convenience, because it's over 100 degrees outside and I don't feel like sweating. With my base figured out, I wanted to mix it up a bit with some healthy and tasty accompaniments. I immediately thought of mango rice, but used my mangoes the night before and only had bananas on hand. Not a problem, though I figured I'd need to counter the dry taste of bananas and rice with something like milk, cream or butter. It was coming together nicely.

But, it was starting to sound pretty heavy. That's when I thought of a lettuce wrap. Keep portions smaller, focus on the melding of flavors, and so on. Here it goes.

Jerk Chicken

I had the urge for a dry rub, knowing I was using moist chicken thighs and have had great success with them on the pan fry. The rub is this (1 is in Tsp):

1 - dried thyme
1 - onion powder
1 - garlic powder
1 - onion flakes
2 - sugar
1 - cinnamon
1 - allspice
1/2 - cayenne pepper
1/4 - salt
1/4 - cracked pepper

Mortar and pestle into a fine powder and rub that into your chicken. Set aside for at least 15 minutes. Heat 1 glug of olive oil in pan on smoking hot and fry on one side 4 minutes. Flip and fry on high for another 4 minutes. Remove, let cool slightly, and chop into thick chunks.

Biting Kiwi Sauce

5 Kiwis, skinned, chopped and mashed in a large bowl
Add juice from 1 lemon
Add 1 Tsp rice vinegar
Add 1 Tsp ponzu sauce
Add 2 large cloves of garlic, minced

Stir and mash, repeat. Set in the fridge for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Banana Rice

1 cup rice
2 cups water
1 banana
3 - 4 Tsp sugar
1/4 C cream

put rice in pot and add water. Chop banana and stir in. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 - 40 minutes (depending on your rice type). When it's ready, remove lid, add cream and sugar and stir to warm cream.


~ Brock

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