August 2012 Cookbook of the Month, Planet Barbecue: Poultry, Fish, Shellfish, Vegetables and Vegetarian Dishes
Please use this thread to report on dishes from the following chapters in Planet Barbecue:
Poultry, pages 351 - 418
Fish, pages 419 - 480
Shellfish, pages 481 - 526
Vegetables and Vegetarian Dishes, pages 527 - 566
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Jordanian Grilled Chicken, Planet Barbecue, page 378.
I'm hoping that people don't mind that I link to a couple Planet Barbecue recipes I reported on the grilling thread. I always search for others doing the same recipe when I am trying one, so I thought I'd just post a couple links. I won't take the liberty of linking anyone else's posts, just my own.
Jordanian (not Grilled) Chicken, p. 378
The flavors in this recipe intrigued me, but I made it as a braise rather than grilled. It was a great success, so I'll report on it here, even though I made some major changes!
I took about 4 lbs of bone-in chicken thighs and skinned them, drizzled them with olive oil, then tossed them with the spice mixture of salt, cumin, coriander, paprika, and pepper, plus a bunch of sliced onions and bay leaves. I gave them a drink of white wine as well, maybe 1 c. I accidentally grabbed the hot paprika instead of the sweet, but it was fine, so I'll do it again. I also added the raisins, cardamom pods (several!), and cinnamon to the chicken, rather than cooking them separately. I let it marinate overnight.
To cook it, I spread the chicken out in a heavy roasting pan, sprinkled it liberally with sliced almonds, and covered it loosely with a sheet of foil. I baked it at 350 degrees for, hmm, maybe 1 1/2 hours? Something like that. Towards the end I removed the foil to allow a little more browning.
It was delicious! We were having a group of friends over after a local wine stroll event, so I wanted a main that wouldn't need much fussing. Essentially I was following my Chicken Marbella model but using the Jordanian Chicken flavors. I will totally do it again. But I will also make the grilled version someday too, honest!
Saffron Chicken Tikka and Green Herb Chutney, pg 399
This one got mixed reviews from us. It may have been in part overshadowed by the other grilled recipe I served on the same night (Ground Lamb Kebab with Cumin and Mint pg 328). It was interesting, response was definitely lackluster on the night we made it, but I warmed up significantly to it on repeat sampling.
So, I did modify the recipe slightly. I used boneless, skinless thighs, but did not cut them up into chunks, just left them whole. These are marinaded in garlic, ginger and lemon juice first for an hour. To this, a mix of yogurt, saffron, S/P, cardamom is added for an additional 3 hours of marinade. You were supposed to also have some whipping cream and mace in the second marinade, but I left those out because I didn't have them (and didn't see the need for the extra dairy).
I didn't use skewers, since I was using whole boneless thighs. Grilling was left to my husband, who grilled them perfectly on our charcoal grill. I also didn't baste them with butter, in part because it seemed too time consuming, and also because I would rather slather my naan in butter and didn't want to give everyone a heart attack.
I also made the Green Herb chutney, which was dead easy and very good. Just cilantro, mint, spinach, yogurt, lemon salt and pepper in the food processor. I have made similar chutneys before, but never with spinach. I couldn't really taste the spinach, but I figured it added some extra vitamins to the mix. I served everything with buttered naan (forzen from Trader Joes) and a tomato onion salad.
The chicken in the end was good, but a little odd to our taste. The cardamom and saffron together made it extremely fragrant and more floral than we liked. When compared with the kofta with which we serevd it, it seemed refined and ladylike in comparison, but just not as delicious. None of my kids would eat it either.
Interestingly, I ended up eating it many times for lunch in leftover form since it was unpopular to start. I really warmed up to it in that form served with a spinach cumin basmati rice from 660 curries. When not being overshadowed by the Kofta, I was able to appreciate it more and I felt like the floral notes, which seemed so overwhelming at first toned down a bit and were better balanced with the citrus and aromatics.
In the end, I don't think we'll be repeating this one. Too many great dishes to try, but it was interesting...