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Chinese Jerk Chicken with Mango Salsa

From Asian Wraps: Easy Hand Held Bundles to Stuff, Wrap & Relish

6 boneless chicken legs
6 boneless chicken thighs

Jerk paste:
6 to 7 small fresh red chili peppers of your choice, ends trimmed and seeds removed (see note 1)
3-1/2 tablespoons minced scallion whites
2 tablespoons peeled and minced fresh ginger
1-1/2 tablespoons dried basil
2 tablespoons mustard powder
1-1/2 tablespoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons Japanese rice vinegar

For serving:
4 cups shredded romaine lettuce leaves
18 flour tortillas Toasted
sesame oil, as needed


Mango salsa (see note 2):
3 to 4 ripe mangoes (or fresh or thawed frozen peaches), peeled, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 medium red onion, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Juice of 2 limes (about 6 tablespoons)
1/4 cup chopped cilantro (fresh coriander) leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Trim chicken of excess skin and fat. Set aside. (Refrigerate chicken if you will be setting it aside for more than 10 minutes.)

Put jerk paste ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend to a paste. Put in a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 1 hour at room temperature or overnight in the refrigerator.

Put the chicken in a large bowl, add the paste; toss to coat evenly, rubbing the paste into the skin. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Prepare a hot fire for grilling. Oil the grill rack and place it about 3 inches above heat. Arrange chicken on grill rack and cook, covered, until completely cooked through, 8-12 minutes, turning once, or until done (when chicken reaches an internal temperature of 180 F on a meat thermometer and when pierced at the thickest part with a knife or fork, the juices run clear without any trace of pink). Remove and let cool slightly.

Arrange shredded lettuce around rim of a serving platter. Brush the tortillas lightly with toasted sesame oil, fold them into quarters and steam for 10 minutes. Arrange them in a basket or serving bowl and cover with a clean dish towel to keep warm.

To prepare salsa: In a medium bowl, mix together mangoes and onion. Add cumin and lime juice and add cilantro, salt and pepper. Spoon into a serving dish and serve at room temperature. Yields about 3 cups salsa.

To serve: Cut the chicken into thin slices and arrange in the middle of the platter of lettuce. Put some chicken slices in the middle of a warm tortilla, add some shredded lettuce, spoon some of the salsa on top, roll up the tortilla and eat with your fingers. Yields 6 servings of 3 tortillas each.

Note 1: Experts recommend wearing rubber gloves when handling chilies and not touching your eyes.

Note 2: Store-bought fruit salsa can be substituted for the homemade mango salsa.


(Updated: 10/21/08 SN)

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