Look to the Caribbean for a spicy approach to chicken that will wake up your menus. Jerk seasoning originated in Jamaica, and it is used as a traditional accompaniment for grilled pork and chicken. This recipe calls for ingredients used in traditional jerk recipes, but replaces the usual Scotch bonnets with extra-hot habañero and serrano peppers. The marinade tends to burn easily, so cook the chicken slowly on the grill for the best results and most tender chicken. Serve with a mango salsa, black beans and rice.
1 cup finely chopped onion
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
6 green onions, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 habañero or serrano pepper, finely chopped*
4 ½ teaspoons olive oil
4 ½ teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
1 tablespoon ground allspice
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
*Habañero and serrano peppers can sting and irritate the skin, so wear rubber gloves when handling peppers -- and make sure you don't touch your eyes.
Combine all ingredients except chicken in medium bowl; mix well. Place chicken in resealable food storage bag and add seasoning mixture. Seal bag; turn to coat chicken. Marinate in refrigerator 4 hours or overnight. Spray cold grid with nonstick cooking spray. Adjust grid to 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters) above heat. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Remove chicken from marinade. Grill 5 to 7 minutes per side or until chicken is no longer pink in center, brushing occasionally with marinade. Do not brush with marinade during last 5 minutes of grilling. Discard remaining marinade.