Sitting on the rooftop patio drinking a beer and listening to music is a great way to start the weekend. Jackie and I thoroughly enjoy these kinds of evenings in the summer months. As our roof deck overlooks many restaurants, we often smell the aroma of grilled meat from the corner establishment. It was one of these moments that inspired this recipe for my Jerk Chicken Thigh Skewers.
“Meat on the street” (as we call it) can be found on many corners in Manhattan. Food carts crowd the street, creating lines down the block and delectable aromas that stick with you. Even though they smell delicious, we are the types who buy our food this way. The scents and spices do, however, inspire me. So much so that I sometimes try to recreate these same aromas at home. I have always been a fan of jerk seasonings; they work particularly well for grilling. I chose chicken thighs for this particular recipe because they are moist and juicy, and they absorb the jerk flavors very well.
How to make your own Jerk Seasoning:
- Mix together: 2 tsp dry chives, 2 tsp sugar, ½ tsp nutmeg, 3 tsp salt, 1 tbsp garlic powder, ½ tsp cumin, 1 tsp crushed red pepper, 1 tsp dark red paprika, ½ tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp white pepper, 1 tsp all spice, ¼ tsp cinnamon, 1 tbsp dehydrated onion flakes, 2 tsp thyme, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tsp black pepper
- Coat your favorite meat and grill.
The first time I made these Jerk Chicken Thigh Skewers, I did not marinate the chicken first. While it is was good, I decided it was missing a little something. I decided to try the marinade to help give this dish a little more tenderness and offer a bit of tanginess from the lime juice. The spice mix is so complex, a perfect combination of sweet and spicy. It screams summer, in a way that will make you want to pack your bags and head off to the beach.
Hungry for more great grilling recipes? Check out some of Keith's favorites: Grilled Chicken with Lemon & Dijon Marinade , Grilled Baja Shrimp with Chili Lime Glaze, Skirt Steak with Grilled Peach & Mango ChutneyPrint
Fire up the grill for some sizzling flavor! Inspired by Manhattan street food, Jerk Chicken Thigh Skewers add a kick to your cookout.
For the Jerk Seasoning:
- 2 tsp dry chives
- 2 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp nutmeg
- 3 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp cumin
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper
- 1 tsp dark red paprika
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp all spice
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp dehydrated onion flakes
- 2 tsp thyme
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tsp black pepper
For the chicken:
- 2 limes
- 1 C chopped fresh cilantro
- ¼ C olive oil
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
- Cut all chicken thighs in half lengthways
- In a mixing bowl, combine juice of limes, cilantro and oil.
- Marinate the chicken thighs for at least 2 hours.
- Remove chicken thighs and place on skewers. Coat both sides heavily with Jerk spice mixture and grill on open flame until cooked to at least 165°.
Keywords: chicken, skewers, street food, thighs, jerk, jerk chicken, spices, grilling, cookout