North African Spiced Grilled Chicken for a casual evening with friends
The star of the evening is the marinade on the chicken. It is a North African marinade which I found on America's Test Kitchen website. I paired this with some fresh corn salad . We started the evening with some Baba Ghanoush, Hummus and Fresh Vegetables. The eggplant for the Baba Ghanoush came from our garden and well as the cucumbers.This is a great way to entertain in the summer. The flavors are fresh and the dishes are easy to make ahead so you can socialize with your guests.
Ingredients: Serves 6 - 8
4-10 Chiles de Arbol, stemmed (these may be found near the Mexican food spices)
3 T olive oil
2 T salt
8 garlic cloves, peeled
2 T tomato paste
1 shallot, chopped
1 T sugar
1 T paprika
1 T Chinese five spice powder
2 t grated lemon zest plus 1/4 c lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
1 t pepper
1/2 t cayenne pepper
3 bay leaves, crushed
6 lbs. bone in chicken pieces, (I used a mixture and removed the skin, although the original recipe leaves the skin on)
1/2 c dry-roasted peanuts, chopped fine
2 disposable aluminum pie plates
Marinade: Process the Chiles through the bay leaves in a blender or food processor until it forms a paste. Start with 4 chiles and taste the paste, if you like your food a little spicier then add more chiles, taste and continue until you have the desired taste. Poke holes in the chicken and put into a dish or a Ziploc and cover with the marinade. Sprinkle with the crushed peanuts. Place in fridge overnight.
6-8 ears of corn, cut off the cobb
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 c chopped fresh cilantro
1 small red or orange bell pepper chopped small
1 serrano, seeded and chopped fine
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
3 -4 limes juiced, about 1/4 c of fresh lime juice
S & P
The salad may be made in the morning then refrigerated. Take out 1 hour prior to serving.
In a medium pan, heat about 3T olive oil, add garlic and saute. Once garlic begins to give off an aroma add the corn. Saute for about 3 minutes, just to release the starches. In the meantime, place the black beans, peppers and lime juice in a large bowl, add the corn and toss all together. You may need a little more olive oil, 1 -2 T. Add cilantro, toss and then add seasoning. Toss again, cover and refrigerate.
Remove the chicken from the fridge 1 hour prior to grilling. Fill the 2 pie pans with 1 1/2c water each and place on one end of the grill. Turn all burners to high while preheating. When heated, turn off all but 1 burner. This will be the burner you will use to cook the chicken. Try to maintain a temperature on the grill between 325 and 350. Cook chicken until legs and thighs are 175 and breasts are 160. Remove the chicken and cover with foil. This may be served at room temp or warm. (I served this at room temp everyone loved it and you could really taste the flavors.)