We are always looking for ways to ‘jazz up’ (as my beautiful mum would say) our food. I can think of no better place to start than with the spice drawer. Spices can turn a simple piece of chicken, meat or seafood into a culinary delight. This recipe takes its inspiration from Jamaica, with the use of jerk seasoning. Let the flavours make your kitchen the most intoxicating and seductive place to be. You will need to start this recipe a day ahead.

What you’ll need:

  •  1kg chicken drumsticks
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • Lime wedges, to serve
  • 1 handful of coriander leaves, to serve
  • Roasted vegetables, to serve

Jerk Marinade

  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 3 spring onions, chopped
  • 6 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 4 scotch bonnets or habanero chillies, deseeded and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons tamari or coconut aminos
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

 

How to make it:

  1. To make the jerk marinade, combine all the ingredients in a food processor and process to a smooth paste.
  2. Transfer the marinade to a large shallow bowl, add the chicken and bay leaves and turn the chicken to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight for best results.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  4. Bring the chicken to room temperature 20 minutes before cooking.
  5. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium to high heat. Add the chicken drumsticks, in batches, and seal, basting occasionally with the marinade for five minutes, or until browned on all sides.
  6. Place the chicken in a roasting tin and roast in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked all the way through. Cover with foil and allow to rest for five minutes before serving.
  7. Arrange the chicken and lime wedges on a platter and sprinkle over the coriander leaves.
  8. Add a good serving of your favourite fermented veggies.