Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Jamie's jerk chicken




Sorry for the appalling picture. I simply don't understand my camera and it occasionally has a kind of spontaneous fit and if it agrees to take a picture at all, it's a bad one, despite the machine costing several hundred pounds (of someone else's money).

So last night I made this out of Jamie's 30-Minute Meals because I LOVE JAMIE OLIVER in the way only a trembling, slightly tearful frightened pregnant lady can. Every time I turn to my recordings on the V+ box there is just a long list of Jamie Oliver programmes. It's quite embarrassing when my husband's in the room because it's like he can see into my head and it's going: "Jamie Oliver Jamie Oliver Jamie Oliver Jamie Oliver." But I think my husband's got a weeny little crush on JO as well so that's okay.

This jerk chicken is very exciting, but I think there might be a small mistake in the sauce quantities. I only think, though, I'm probably wrong. But it specifies 6 tablespoons EACH of vinegar and rum, which makes the sauce quite wet, and it gets wetter on cooking, which I'm not sure can be right.

Feel free to make this as it stands, or to do what I would do if I were making this again, which would be to add only three tablespoons each of the vinegar and rum to make six tablespoons of wet stuff in total.

A little bird, okay it's my friend AC... who actually is quite little and a bird so very apt description... says that she thought this sauce was a bit wet, too - and something else Jamie did with plums was also wet. So, it's still a mystery, but at least IT'S NOT JUST ME.

[N.B - I made this again the other day with half-quantities of the wet stuff and it turned out much, much better - so do that, I'd say.]

The ingredients list below is exactly as it is in the book. The method is a bit different.

Jamie's jerk chicken

4 chicken breasts
4 spring onions
small bunch fresh thyme
3 fresh bay leaves
ground cloves
ground nutmeg
ground allspice
6 tbs rum (!) - I say use only 3
6 tbs cider/red wine vinegar (!) - ditto
1 tbs runny honey
1 Scotch bonnet chilli (I used 2 red chillies from Waitrose, one seeds in, one seeds out - worked v well)
4 cloves garlic

1 Turn your oven to 220C. Oil a griddle pan, or a normal pan if you haven't got a griddle, and get it roasting hot. Cut the chicken in two at the fattest part so it's still in one piece at the thinnest part but then divides like a sort of cloven hoof (does that make sense?). This helps it cook quicker.

Put the chicken skin-side down in the hot pan and then leave it alone for about 5-6 minutes. Don't poke it about because you want the skin to go crispy and a bit charred and you've got a better chance of that happening (this goes for steak, too) if you just let it get on with it.

2 Chop up the spring onions a bit and put in a whizzer with all the other sauce ingredients. If you haven't got the spices ground, as I didn't, smash about half a teaspoon of each in a pestle and mortar and grate in a big pinch of nutmeg. If using ground, take a big pinch of each spice.

3 Pour your whizzed jerk sauce into an oven dish. Then remove the chicken from the pan and place skin-side up in the pool of sauce. Drizzle over, if you like, an extra tablespoon of honey, more salt and pepper and sprigs of thyme and rosemary if you want it to look nice. Jamie's advice, which I always now follow (because it's love, after all) is that you should smush oil over herbs before scattering them on top of a dish like this so that they cook rather than frazz.

4 Cook on a high shelf for 15 minutes.

24 comments:

  1. so does it take 30 minutes? I'm not convinced about this current series... and I'm a bit disappointed with Nigella's too... I'm finding them both a bit fake... I love them normally? I think it's watching them all back to back, it's the same dish after dish just with a different twist here or there... anyway, the jerk chicken looks great nonetheless...

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  2. Who cares about Nigella or Jamie ... but a good jerk chicken is a thing of beauty ... give me some good red beans and rice and a dish of cold mango to cool my burning tongue and I'm a happy woman ... oh, and some Red Stripe to swill, too. Maybe some reggae blasting in the background ... hmmm what else?

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  3. I was slightly scandalised by the use of black beans in the rice and peas... but I was intrigued by the jerk chicken. I'm still trying to find my father's jerk chicken recipe as he was both obsessive about these things and Jamaican, so I'm hoping it will be the answer to all my jerk prayers. If I find it I will share it.

    I've made a few things from this series too - I usually skip the puddings and the random salad elements. Is the book worth it you think if you've watched most of the series?

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  4. I'm, personally, very pleased that I bought the book - and I've V+'d most of the series - just because I find I'm more likely to cook something if I've got the book of it.

    However, it's really NOT for experienced cooks it's just for fliddy scared amateurs like me. There is also a slight issue with the timings in that you're supposed to follow the instructions to the letter in order to get your dinner out in 30 minutes. You can pick and choose the things you want to cook, but it's not especially straightforward.

    Do, please, share your dad's jerk recipe if you find it. I think jerk sauce is very interesting and exciting.

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  5. I made this for friends a few weeks ago and ended up serving them raw chicken. Still not sure what went wrong - it was in the oven for half an hour or whatever Jamie says but still pink. Still, prob my fault, not his...

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    Replies
    1. What are the chances your oven was set at 200 degrees Fahrenheit? Recipe says 200 Celcius which converts to 392 F. Just a thought.

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  6. I agree with spice garden since when was Jerk Chicken Jamie's? It is quintessentially Jamaican and belongs to us! LOL I love my served with rice and beans and a cucumber salad. Delicious!

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  7. Er yeah... All I meant was that it was jamie's recipe for jerk chicken. I didn't think he invented it or anything...

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  8. I have just made Nigella's... and was VERY disappointed! Too many ingredients, too wet and a the balance between sweet and sour was wrong (quite sickly in fact!). Not a good experience, so I don't know if I want to try Jamie's now.....

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  9. Leave out the rum, cider vinegar, and honey.
    You'll then get a more authentic tasting jerk chicken

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  10. I love JO too, but since you said you may try making homemade pasta this year, I figured I'd let you know in advance that his homemade pasta recipe doesn't really work. Here's my sordid failure at trying it: http://toohardtofindaurl.blogspot.com/2010/12/pasta-from-scratch.html

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  11. I LOVE JO............All of his recipe's have worked to time.......GO JO
    XOOX

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  12. I tried this recipe for the second time tonight and was really disappointed because the sauce turned out all leafy for some reason :/ is it meant to be like that? The texture just felt like I was eating a bunch of leaves that had been put in the processor, whereas I was expecting something smooth. Have I done something wrong?

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    1. I don't think the bay leaves should be blitzed up, that sounds wrong. I would just put them in the dish whole.

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  13. lovely dish, lovely blog made cooking more enjoyable!

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  14. Fucking how do I get my jerk like my mates local jamaican takeaway in Northampton ? I'm gonna spend some time on this one. It's all about giving things a go I guess and then working on them a

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  15. My iPad is shit at unblushing comments on your blog - as my last jerk comment shows.

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  16. I make this dish regularly and its fab.

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  17. i make this all the time i leave out the rum as i dont take alcohol and i use full amount of of vinegar as it gives a kick to the chicken. i love jamie also. i only use his recipes as they always taste wow! have you done the chicken satay and noodle salad? the rice noodle salad and the thai curry sauce is like heaven specially with the chicken. i also done the stuffed chicken breast with feta and parsley with is nice too. yeah you can tell how much i rate jamie.

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    Replies
    1. I'm off alcohol for now and I used apple juice instead of rum, worked great. But the cider vinegar really does give it a boost!

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  18. I made this today. I used 6tbs of rum though and stuck with Jamie's recipe 100% cooking while watching his video on youtube. I don't normally cook and this was my first time preparing or trying Jerk Chicken. I used two scotch bonnets and boy was I in for a surprise. My fingers still feel like they're on fire. Watching the video I didn't realise the scotch bonnets would be So hot. The jerk sauce was SERIOUSLY HOT. Next time I'll be using only half of a scotch bonnet chilli and using gloves (as recommended on the packet which I only read after I'd done the cooking.haha. THe chicken itself turned out beautiful and the flavours were amazing especially having with the cold yogurt (with coriander and lime). I will definitely be making this again. Finally, it did take me more than thirty minutes to cook it... Maybe around 45-50 minutes. Just because I'm still a newbie at cooking. :)
    But LOved the Jerk Chicken and now I'm a fan of JO too.

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  19. if you want an authentic recipe check this out: http://jamaicatravelandculture.com/food_and_drink/jerk_chicken.htm

    much of the flavour in Jerk comes form the smoke of pimento wood; you will never recreat this in the oven. cook on charcoal, covered with applewood (if cant get pimento). Throw on the damp wood and get it really smoking before you start cooking, close the bbq lid and cook slowly for a couple of hours.

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  20. Ummm. Yummy,,,thanks for dropping by,..:)

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  21. Hey, thanks so much for posting this recipe! I've got one comment though, I was JUST watching the episode you're talking about and he did not put any rum at all; only vinegar. Maybe that's why it came out too wet with you.

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