The nights are still cool but the days are warmer. A sure sign that summer is trying to break free from its corral to unleash its full force. What better way to deal with (no, I didn’t say welcome nor celebrate) the looming heat of summer is there than to take out the grill? Alex cooked lemon-lime grilled chicken which we paired with a simple salad and the hearty Spanish sausage, garbanzos and spinach soup.
There’s no scientific reason why lemon and lime juices were combined to make the marinade for this grilled chicken dish. Alex was inspecting the kaffir lime tree for fruits that were ready for picking and found only one, so she didn’t have enough citrus juice for the amount of chicken drumsticks that she was going to grill. Knowing how important the tang factor is in making marinade, she took a store-bought lemon from the fridge, squeezed enough juice from it and combined it with the kaffir lime juice. She mixed the citrus juices with Greek yogurt and spices, and soaked the chicken in the mixture.
The resulting lemon-lime grilled chicken was delectable. The yogurt added moisture to the meat, the zests gave off a bright and fresh aroma, the juices and spices created a wonderful balance of flavors that seared the meat all the way to the bone.
- 8 to 10 chicken drumsticks (thighs will work too)
- juice of 1 kaffir lime (a regular lime can be substituted)
- juice of ¼ lemon
- 2 pairs kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
- zest from one kaffir lime
- zest from ½ lemon (see tips)
- ½ cup greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon mustard
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne powder
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Place in a shallow bowl.
- In another bowl, mix the rest of the ingredients to make the marinade.
- Pour the marinade over the chicken. Mix well. Cover the bowl and allow the chicken to soak up the flavors in the marinade. Two hours should be fine but twice as long will yield even better results.
- Prepare the grill. Place the rack at least six inches from the heat (see kinds of grill, temperature control and the distance between the food and the heat).
- Grill the chicken for five to six minutes per side (the actual grilling time depends on the weight of each piece of chicken). Make sure that there is enough space between the chicken pieces for heat to circulate. If your grill is not large enough to cook all chicken pieces at the same time, grill them in batches.
- Serve the lemon-lime grilled chicken directly from the grill.