Day 3 of the NFL draft meant Day 3 of “meat-a-palooza”. Today’s protein was chicken. This recipe is a good one to pull out during grilling season for larger groups because it’s so easy, yet so tasty. The combination of sweet, sour, bitter and salt comes together with a nice balance in the marinade.
Tender parts of the chicken such as thighs and drumsticks not only soak up the marinade better, but come off the grill juicy and succulent. Get 2 packs of each and opt for the local, unfrozen kind.
We served this on the patio next to the pool with friends who were also celebrating Meat-a-palooza during the NFL draft. Suffice to say, out of 8 people there were no leftovers.
At a minimum, marinate the chicken for one day but for best results let it rest for a couple of days. Before grilling I let the chicken sit out for over an hour to get it closer to room temperature which allows the inside of the meat to cook more evenly. Cold meat is no bueno on a hot grill.
There’s two different cooking techniques you can employ on the grill. Direct heat is where you put the chicken directly above the flame. The meat can cook faster, but it can also give the outside a nice caramelized exterior.
The method I prefer is indirect heat. My grill has 3 rows of heat — I just turn on the front 2 rows to medium, but not the back row. I then cook the chicken on the grill above the back row of heat that’s not on. What happens is the heat from the front 2 burners follows air flow to the back of the grill, so the chicken is getting heat to cook the inside without drying out.
serve with a nice cold stout like Guinness or a Zinfandel from Sonoma like Cline Cellars Heritage Zin
To finish the chicken, turn the front burners up high and cook on direct heat for a few minutes just to crisp up the outside.
When the chicken comes off the grill, let it sit for about five minutes. Make sure to cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. Serve the chicken in your favorite dish. No sauce needed, just enjoy!