Jerk Chicken with Rum-Pickled Pineapple

I got introduced to the absolute deliciousness of Caribbean food after spending two weeks in Barbados a few years ago.  Flying fish, jerk chicken from the local rum shop, plantain wrapped in bacon and macaroni pie are a few Bajan specialities.  YUM! Doug and I came back to South Africa with two bottles of Mount Gay Rum, a couple of packets of jerk sauce and a bottle of Bajan hot sauce.

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Since then, I have made Jerk chicken a few times and to my absolute delight, my jerk actually tasted similar to the legit stuff from Barbados.  I usually use Jamie Oliver’s’ recipe from 30 Minute Meals and it tastes amazing. However, I was browsing through a Donna Hay Magazine (I am addicted!) the other day and saw a recipe for jerk chicken wings WITH rum-pickled pineapple! Oh my word, not only is jerk chicken so tasty but rum pickled pineapple as a side just took things to a whole other level.  So of course, I decided to give it a try and of course, I changed the recipe.  The jerk sauce is a mixture between Donna Hay and Jamie Oliver and instead of chicken wings I used whole chicken legs (drumstick and thigh) to make it more of a meal and not just a snack.

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For the pickled pineapple skeptics, do your self a favour and just give it a try.  The pineapple is so delicious, with this kick from the chilli and rum, perfectly complimenting the hot, crispy chicken.  I served it with rice and beans, and the lovely vinegary sauce takes the rice to another level.  The pineapple tastes ever better after a day pickling in the fridge.

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Jerk Chicken and Rum-Pickled Pineapple

Adapted from Donna Hay Magazine (Oct/Nov 2014) with some inspiration from Jamie Oliver (30 Minute Meals)

Serves 2

Jerk Marinade:

  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 4 spring onions, trimmed
  • 1  chilli
  • 1 Tsp all spice, ground
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1.5 Tbsp Honey
  • 1 Tbsp rum (brown/golden rum)
  • 4 thyme sprigs, leaves removed
  • 2 x whole chicken legs (drumstick and thigh) and 2 x wings (optional)

Rum-Pickled Pineapple

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup castor sugar
  • 1 Tsp salt
  • 4 sprigs thyme
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1 medium pineapple, peeled, quartered and thinly sliced
  • 1 Tsp lime rind, grated
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp rum

Jerk Chicken

  1. Blend the marinade ingredients together until smooth
  2. Place the chicken in a bowl, cover evenly with the marinade, cover and leave to marinade in the fridge for an hour

Rum-Pickled Pineapple

  1. While the chicken is marinating, place the vinegar, sugar, salt, thyme and lime juice in a pot and bring to the boil to dissolve the sugar
  2. All to cool and place the pineapple, lime rind, jalapeño and rum in a bowl
  3. Pour of the vinegar mixture, cover and leave until serving

Jerk Chicken

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C
  2. Place the chicken on a baking tray and cook for 35-45 minutes or until cooked (and the wings crispy), basting with the left over marinade half way through
  3. Serve with rice and beans, sweetcorn on the cob and the pickled pineapple

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