Lifestyle

Michele's Epicurean Jamaican Delights

Best Dressed BBQ

Thursday, July 26, 2012    

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This week's delectable barbecue treats are the creations of catering genius Michele Williams of Moveable Feast and her team. Believe us when we tell you the food was delightful! The Out of Many One People-themed barbecue dinner showcased Jamaica's cuisine influenced by other cultures. Give these mouth-watering recipes a try, and as always we welcome your feedback.

(Photos: Jermaine Barnaby)

RECIPES

Jerked Chicken Pita Pizzas

Ingredients:

4-6 de-boned Best Dressed Chicken thighs

Seasoning for chicken (blended):

1 small onion

1 stalk scallion

1 sprig of thyme

1/2 tsp all-purpose seasoning

1/2 tsp chicken seasoning

1/2-1 tsp soy sauce

1 or 1/2 small hot pepper

5 seeds pimento

2 cloves garlic

2 tbs jerk seasoning paste

1-2 tsp olive oil

Additional ingredients:

1 package pita bread (3 rounds)

6 tablespoons tomato sauce

6 teaspoons feta cheese

6 olives (sliced)

1 small jar roasted red bell pepper or 2 red peppers (*see below)

Mixed greens or chopped lettuce

Method:

On a medium outdoor grill, grill chicken thighs for about 15 minutes, turning each thigh to allow even cooking on each side. Cover and set cooked chicken aside. Next, grill the flat bread for 1-2 minutes on each side.

Remove bread and set aside. On each round of bread spoon 2 tablespoons of tomato sauce and add toppings as desired. For each bread round add 2 olives sliced, 1/4 of a red bell pepper sliced, 2 teaspoons crumbled feta and finish by garnishing with baby mixed greens, spinach or lettuce. Cut each bread round into 6-8 triangular-shaped pieces.

*To roast your own bell peppers, cut bell peppers in half and remove seeds. Lightly season with salt, pepper and olive oil, char on grill for a few minutes on each side until skin appears black.

Cover in a container for a few minutes, peel away outer skin and use inner part of pepper. Recipe serves 6-8 persons.

Mango Hoisin Barbecued Chicken Wings

Ingredients:

1-1 1/2 lb Best Dressed Chicken wings

1 small onion

1-2 stalks scallion

1-2 sprigs of thyme

1/2 tsp all purpose seasoning

1/2 tsp chicken seasoning

3-4 cloves garlic

1/2 small finger of ginger, minced

1-2 tsp soy sauce (as desired)

2 tbs Hoisin sauce

2 tbs mango chutney

2 tbs barbecue sauce

Black pepper and garlic powder (as desired)

Pinch of five-spice powder

Lime or lemon juice and vinegar (rinse chicken)

Basting sauce:

1/4 -1/2 cup barbecue sauce

3 tbs mango chutney

2 tbs Hoisin sauce

Method:

Rinse wings with a little lemon juice, vinegar and water. Drain chicken and season with the above ingredients (blended in a small food processor).

Set aside seasoned wings in a refrigerator overnight or if possible 2-3 hours.

Grill on medium heat for about 15 minutes, 7 minutes on each side. Turn and baste occasionally with barbecue basting sauce. Cover chicken with lid of grill for about 5 minutes to allow chicken to cook to the bone. Garnish with fresh cilantro, chopped chives. Serve with salsa.

Recipe serves approximately 4 persons (3 per person).

Charcoal Chicken Skewers Spiked With Jamaican Rum

Ingredients:

1lb Best Dressed Chicken de-boned thighs (4-6 thighs)

2-3 tsp sesame oil

Blend in a food processor:

1 small onion

2 stalks of scallion

1 sprig of thyme

1/2 tsp all purpose seasoning

1/2 tsp chicken seasoning

Black pepper (as desired)

Pinch of salt

Garlic powder (sprinkle)

1/2-1/4 small Scotch bonnet pepper

1 small green sweet pepper

2-3 cloves garlic

1 tsp soy sauce

2 tbs brown sugar

A little water or vinegar to blend

Additional ingredients:

1/4 cup Jamaican dark rum

Lime or lemon juice and vinegar

Method:

Wash chicken with water, lemon juice and vinegar. Drain well and season with the blended ingredients listed above.

* You may chop ingredients very small on a cutting board if you do not have a food processor. Refrigerate chicken overnight or at least 1-2 hours.

Before grilling bring chicken to room temperature. In a small sauce pan on low heat simmer rum, orange juice and brown sugar for a few minutes until reduced.

Chicken thighs may be grilled whole without the use of skewers for approximately 6-7 minutes per side.

Strain chicken marinade, place in a small sauce on medium heat. When it starts to boil, add the rum and boil for 5 minutes, then remove from heat. Remove thighs, cut each thigh into two or three strips and thread each strip onto a skewer. Spoon the rum sauce reduction over cooked chicken skewers.

Recipe serves 4-6 persons with 2-3 skewers per person. One thigh yields two skewers.

Grilled Chicken Breast Tenderloin With Creamy Mushroom Wine Sauce

Grilled chicken

Ingredients:

1 package of 4- 5 whole de-boned Best Dressed Chicken breasts or breast tender strips

1 small - medium onion

2 stalks of scallion

1 large sprig of thyme

2 cloves garlic

1/2 tsp all-purpose seasoning

1/2 tsp chicken seasoning

1/4 hot pepper

A few seeds pimento (4-5)

1 tsp soy sauce

Mushroom Wine Sauce

Ingredients:

8 ozs fresh button mushroom

2 cups milk

1/2 - 1/4 cup heavy cream

1/4 cup white wine

2-3 tbs flour

2 tbs butter

2 large cloves garlic, chopped

2 sprigs fresh or dried tarragon

1 onion, diced

Method for Grilled Chicken:

Wash chicken, drain, and season with blended seasoning listed above.

Prepare grill with medium heat, sprinkle breasts with a little olive oil or vegetable oil, place breasts diagonally on grill for 5-6 minutes on each side with cover of grill down if breasts are small.

Slice breasts diagonally and drizzle sauce over cooked chicken.

Method for Mushroom Wine Sauce:

Start by making a roux (base for sauce). In a medium saucepan stir butter and flour for about 1-2 minutes on medium heat. Using a wire whisk gently stir in milk slowly in a circular motion, adding cream, white wine and herbs for about 5-6 minutes.

Add the onion and mushrooms. Reduce heat and simmer sauce for about another 5 minutes.

Drizzle sauce over grilled chicken on a platter just before service and garnish with fresh herbs.

Grilled Pineapple Mango Papaya Salsa (served with mixed greens)

Ingredients:

1 large grilled pineapple, diced (see notes on grilling below)

1 large firm mango, peeled and diced

1 medium firm papaya, diced

1/4 cup red onion, minced

1 large red bell pepper, diced

2 tbs cilantro or mint, chopped

2 tbs flat leaf parsley

2 tbs fresh basil

1 tbs lime juice

2 tbs olive oil

Before serving mixed greens, add:

1/8 teaspoon white, black or fresh cracked pepper

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1 package (12 oz) mixed greens

*Great accompaniment to grilled Best Dressed Chicken wings, breast tenderloin or de-boned thighs.

Grilled Pineapple Marinade:

Ingredients:

1 tbs olive oil

2 tbs honey or brown sugar

1 tbs lime juice

1 tsp cinnamon or freshly grated nutmeg

1 tbs dark rum

Grilled Pineapple Method:

Peel pineapple, cut in four quarters and remove hard inner core. Cut into serving size wedges. Brush wedges with marinade and place on grill on medium to low heat, turning once and basting once or twice. Cook until tender, approximately 5 minutes on each side.

Tip: When grilling pineapple, you may find it easier if pineapple is skewered with bamboo skewers, soaked at least one hour in water to prevent sticks from burning. Long tongs may also be used.

Method for Salsa:

Combine all the ingredients except salt and pepper in a large bowl.

Stir gently, cover and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes. When ready to serve, add salt and pepper and serve at room temperature. The recipe yields 4 cups salsa.

Fire-roasted Tomatoes And Green Beans With Fennel

Ingredients:

Large salad tomatoes (very firm)

1-11/2 lbs green beans

Olive oil

Sea salt (to taste)

Fresh cracked black pepper

Method:

Slice tomatoes thickly, you should be able to get 4-5 slices from a large tomato. Place tomatoes in a small bowl, lightly season with pepper. Sprinkle a little olive oil on both sides to coat evenly.

Grill tomatoes until slightly tender, approximately 2 minutes on each side, remove from grill and season to taste with a little sea salt. To grill green beans, repeat process above but you may add salt, pepper and oil at the same time to season green beans.

Serving suggestion, you may place tomato on a serving platter in the centre and encircle tomatoes with green beans.

Garnish with fresh fennel.

Serves 4-5 persons.

Road Side Roast Corn "Lollipops"

Ingredients:

3 corn on the cob

Sea salt (to taste)

Cracked pepper

Butter to taste

6-inch skewers (for presentation)

Method:

Strip corn husk away from corn kernels. Do not discard husk, grill slightly and reserve to garnish platter. Roast corn on medium heat on an oiled grill rack for 6-7 minutes on each side, rotating corn often to allow for even cooking.

Close lid of grill to allow corn to steam. Corn that is not young may need a little more time on the grill. Total cooking time may range from 10-15 minutes.

Place each roasted corn cob on a cutting board. While holding corn down on board firmly, use a large knife to cut 1/2-inch circles or pinwheels.

You may have to rock the knife a little until you get to the inner core to make a clean cut. Place roasted corn pinwheels in a large bowl and gently coat with a little butter.

Season lightly with a little salt and black pepper if you so desire.

Recipe serves 9 persons, 3 corns should yield 18 rounds "lollipops".

Roast Sweet Potato Wedges With Brown-Sugar Glaze and Grilled Skewered Plantain Rounds

Ingredients:

6 small sweet potatoes

1 tbs butter

2 tbs brown sugar

1 tbs Jamaican honey

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds or pine nuts

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp cracked fresh black pepper

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 -1/2 cup orange juice

Method for sweet potatoes glaze:

Melt butter in a small saucepan, sugar, salt, black pepper and spices. Nuts may be added at this point if you so desire.

Cook sauce, stirring for about 2-3 minutes until sauce reduces and has the consistency of syrup.

*Pumpkin seeds can be sprinkled just before service as a topping.

Method for roast sweet potatoes:

In a medium pot with hot water, parboil sweet potatoes for 10-15 minutes. When slightly cool, cut each potato into 4 wedges.

Brush wedges with glaze, reserve some of the glaze for final presentation.

Grill potatoes for 4-5 minutes on each side or until tender.

Arrange potatoes in the centre of a platter and pour reserved glaze over potatoes.

You may garnish potatoes with pumpkin seeds and chives.

Serves 6-8.

Grilled Skewered Plantain Rounds

Ingredients:

1 large ripe plantain (long and slender)

Olive oil

Skewers (soaked in water for at least an hour)

Method:

Slice the plantain into about 8 or 9 quarter-inch rounds. Thread each skewer with two or three circular pieces of plantain.

Brush plantain rounds with olive oil and grill on medium heat for about 2-3 minutes on each side. Cooking time depends on the thickness of the plantain. Remove the plantain skewers and position the skewers around the edge of the platter that has the roasted sweet potatoes to give the visual impression of a fan.

Tip: The grill should be oiled with a cloth before grilling to prevent plantain from sticking to the grill.

*8-9 rounds from 1 plantain serves 3-4 persons.

June Plum Mango Ginger Cooler

6 June plums, chopped

4 mangoes, peeled and diced

3 medium fingers ginger

3/4 -1 cup granulated sugar

3 cups water

2 tbs lime juice

Method:

Place half of the fruits and ginger with half of the water in a blender and blend until smooth. Strain and repeat. Juice is blended in two batches. Combine strained juice in a juice pitcher with lime juice and sweeten with sugar to taste.

Garnish pitcher and rim of beverage glasses with lime wedges or star fruit. Rum may be added if serving as a cocktail beverage. Serve in margarita glasses.

Serve with ice.

Serves 10 (or for 5 persons, 2 glasses per person).

Ice cream with Stewed Jackfruit

Ingredients:

1 medium tub vanilla ice cream (store-bought)

8 pegs ripe jackfruit

1 teaspoon lime juice or to taste

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1/4 cup orange juice

Method:

In a small saucepan add 1 tablespoon of butter and stir in sugar slowly on low heat.

Add orange juice, lemon juice and thin strips of jackfruit. Simmer until tender for 15-17 minutes. Set aside and allow sauce to cool. Pour over ice cream in an ice cream bowl when ready to serve. Sauce may be served warm. You may also add a little heavy cream for a richer sauce and offer it as a caramel jackfruit sauce.

Garnish with fresh garden mint.

Recipe serves 4.

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