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Jerk chicken legs with rice and peas

Rice and peas is a traditional Jamaican accompaniment to many dishes, including smoky grilled jerk chicken. The peas traditionally used are pigeon peas, but we've used sweet garden peas instead. Start this recipe a day ahead to marinate the chicken.

You'll need

6 fresh bay leaves, coarsely torn 4 spring onions (including half the green parts), coarsely chopped 3 habanero chillies, coarsely chopped (see note) 1½ tbsp coarsely chopped thyme 2 tsp ground allspice 2 tsp coarsely cracked black pepper ½ tsp each ground cinnamon and finely grated nutmeg 2 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp brown sugar Juice of 1 lime, plus wedges to serve 8 chicken Marylands, skin slashed twice on each For drizzling: olive oil   Rice and peas 500 ml (2 cups) each coconut milk and chicken stock 1 habanero chilli, halved 190 gm (1½ cups) brown rice 200 gm frozen peas 3 spring onions, thinly sliced 50 ml olive oil 50 ml lime juice 35 ml orange juice


  • 01
  • Process bay leaves, spring onion, chilli, thyme, spices and 1 tsp sea salt in a food processor until finely chopped. Add soy, sugar and lime juice and process to combine. Rub paste all over chicken pieces, then refrigerate overnight in an airtight container to marinate.
  • 02
  • For rice and peas, bring coconut milk, stock, chilli and 1 tsp sea salt to the boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, then add rice, stir to combine and return to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer until tender (25-30 minutes). Remove from heat, stand for 10 minutes, then strain off any excess liquid, discard chilli and spread rice on a tray to cool to room temperature (1 hour). Meanwhile, blanch peas until tender (1-2 minutes), drain and refresh, then place in a bowl with rice, spring onion, oil, lime juice and orange juice. Season to taste, stir to combine and refrigerate until required.
  • 03
  • Heat a barbecue to medium heat. Wipe excess marinade from chicken and drizzle with a little oil. Barbecue, turning often, until browned and cooked through and juices run clear when thighs are pierced (10-12 minutes; the chicken will become quite dark, this is ok). Serve hot with rice and pea salad and lime wedges.
Note Wear disposable gloves to handle the chillies, and adjust the quantity to your taste.

At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 - 8 people

Drink Suggestion

Earthy full-bodied red, such as Barossa mataro/mourvèdre.

Featured in

Jan 2015

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