We eat a lot of chicken, partly because I like chicken, and partly because I know it’s healthier than eating beef. Cooking chicken needs to be done with some degree of care, because you don’t want to end up with dry, rubbery chicken. Typically I will roast whole chickens, or we’ll bake drums or bone-in breasts, we’ll fry boneless breasts and make chicken pasta or chicken-corn with rice, but today, I wanted to try something different.
I opened the cupboards and the fridge to see what I had to work with. I found a can of coconut milk, and we had some left over cilantro and carrots in the fridge. A quick Google search lead me to a coconut lime chicken dish. The first couple of links I found had some great sounding recipes, but required overnight marinating. I didn’t have that kind of time, so I decided to try Rachel Ray’s recipe, with a 40 minute marinade time. Her recipe is super simple – get the ingredients into a blender and you can kick up your feet.
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 3 tablespoons chopped ginger
- 1 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts
- 1 cup cilantro
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
- 1/3 cup honey
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/3 cup lime juice, plus 1 tsp. grated zest
- 10 skin-on chicken drumsticks
In blender, combine all ingredients except chicken; puree. Cut 2 deep slits in each drumstick; marinate in coconut mixture, at least 1 hour. Transfer chicken to rack placed on foil-lined baking sheet; season. Bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes; flip and bake until cooked through, 10 minutes.
The only ingredient I didn’t have on hand was ginger; however, I have ginger tea so I used a few tablespoons of that.
Prior to adding the chicken to the marinade, I had some concerns because the smell of garlic was very strong. Having a taste, the sharp garlic flavour was very prominent, and at the same time, the honey made the marinade quite sweet. It was all sorts of weird to me, but I had come this far so there was no turning back.
I baked up the chicken at 390F convection, and just before it was ready to come out, I boiled the remaining marinade to use as sauce. This tidbit is relevant. As the chicken was baking, I started chopping carrots. I probably should have used the mandolin but it’s not like there was much to cut. It was one carrot.
After the chicken came out, I dropped the rice noodles into a pot of boiling water. Rice noodles don’t take long to cook, though it took longer than the 2 minutes written on the package. Hubs had arrived home from work around this time, so I asked him if he could attempt to make a fish sauce for the noodles. He tried some things, and ended up doing a Google search and started over – 10 minutes later, a fish sauce was ready.
Back to the marinade – hubs tasted the boiled stuff, and I could tell from his reaction that he was skeptical about the outcome of this chicken meal. The same two things hit him – sweet and garlicky. What is important to know is that these flavours are pronounced as a marinade; however, don’t be put off. The finished product – the chicken – is nicely flavoured. It works. Trust me.
I didn’t have salted peanuts on hand, but I had salted cashews, so I chopped some up and sprinkled it on the noodles.
This recipe is a keeper!