This weekend we rustled up a little Caribbean feast for lunch, complete with a Malibu rum cocktail to wash all the jerk chicken down with! There’s nothing we love more than spending an afternoon in the kitchen, cooking up a feast. We often make large dishes like this jerk chicken one, so that we can freeze the leftovers and have them another time. Batch cooking is so much more affordable and great if you’re in need of a quick dinner one evening.
I was very kindly gifted a bottle of Malibu rum, and I decide to find a refreshing cocktail recipe on their website, to (hopefully) balance out the spice from the jerk flavouring. Luckily it worked perfectly. The cooling watermelon, fresh mint and fizzy soda water helped cool our mouths down and neutralise all of the wonderful flavours going on in the dish. Alongside the jerk chicken we continued the Jamaican theme with ‘rice and peas’, and Callaloo greens.
How to make Jerk Chicken:
Ingredients (serves 6)
- 1kg chicken thighs
- 1 red onion
- 200g jar jerk paste
- 2 limes
- Fresh coriander
Rice and peas:
- 200g basmati rice
- 1 small brown onion
- 400g can of red kidney beans
- 400g coconut milk
- 300ml water
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 large can of Jamaican Callaloo
- Remove all skin from the chicken thighs and discard. Make a few incisions to the chicken thighs and throughly coat in the jerk paste. Place in a large roasting dish and cover with clingfilm. Leave to marinate for 1-2 hours, depending on how spicy you’d like them!
- Once the chicken has marinated, put your oven on to 180 degrees. Cut 2 limes in half and place randomly on top of the chicken, so that the chicken soaks up all of the lime flavour as it cooks.
- Chop the red onion into half cm pieces and scatter through the chicken. Cook everything for 45 minutes until tender and cooked all the way through.
- Whilst the chicken is cooking, make your rice and peas by dicing the brown onion, and finely chopping the 2 garlic cloves. Pour the rice, onion, garlic, coconut milk, thyme and water into a pan, over a high heat. Bring to the boil and then turn down to a medium heat, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
- Drain the red kidney beans and add them to the rice and cover with the lid again. Turn the heat off and leave for 5 minutes until any excess liquid is absorbed.
- At the same time pour the can of callaloo into a small pan and heat through on a low heat for a few minutes. You could add onion and garlic to this to give it an extra kick.
- Remove the chicken from the oven and carefully squeeze the limes over, being careful not to burn your fingers. Season the rice and peas with salt and black pepper and stir thoroughly.
- Serve with extra limes if needed, hot sauce if you like it seriously hot, or plantain chips for a little crunch!
How to make a Mint & Watermelon Rum Cocktail:
Ingredients (makes 2)
- Soda water
- 6 mint leaves
- 1 lime
- 3 cubes watermelon
- 1 wedge watermelon
- Add cubed or crushed ice to two glasses.
- Add 25ml Malibu to each glass.
- Squeeze 2 lime wedges into each glass.
- Gently smack the mint leaves between your hands to bring out their flavour and scent. Add 3 to each glass.
- Add 3 cubes of watermelon and top with soda water. Stir thoroughly and garnish with a watermelon wedge!