Bon Appétit (June 2016)
There are moments in friendships when you reach a new plateau, when you discover something new about someone that strengthens your bond together. Something that really sparks and takes the friendship to a deeper, truer place.
Such was the case when we recently found out our friend Thomas had never seen "Arrested Development."
We were with a big group at Thomas' for July 4th. Everyone was just chatting, and then someone said something -- who knows what it was? Perhaps a Lucille bon mot, or a particularly choice Busterism. And then Thomas said the 10 most glorious words in the English language: "I've never seen that show. We should marathon it together!"
Yes, we should, Thomas. Praise Jesus, Allah, Bhudda and Gob -- YES.
So we had Thomas over this week for his inaugural "Arrested" viewing, along with some Jerk Chicken Legs.
Good news: Thomas loved the Bluths (and if you haven't watched season 1, you should probably drop whatever you're doing and go have yourself a good laugh).
The bad news: For a dish that promises to have a lot of flavor -- and if you're using the word "jerk" in the name of the dish, we're expecting some BIG flavor -- this Jerk Spice-Rubbed Chicken is totally fun, but not very flavorful. We cook a lot of chicken in our house, making our own rubs. We buy big containers of spices from the International aisle, mix like we're mad scientists, and come up with some really flavorful combinations.
But this jerk seasoning doesn't pack a wallop, despite its use of cinnamon, allspice, pepper, cloves, brown sugar, thyme, and cayenne. Making this again, we would use the same ingredients, but definitely amp up the cayenne, allspice and cinnamon, increasing their proportion and maybe even putting 50 percent more rub on the chicken.
So for a good night, queue up your Netflix and make a heftier, spicier portion of this jerk rub.
1 4-inch piece cinnamon stick
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon allspice berries
2 teaspoons black peppercorns
2 teaspoons whole cloves
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
4 chicken legs (thigh and drumstick)
Special Equipment: A spice mill or a mortar and pestle
Preheat oven to 425°. Whack cinnamon stick with the back side of a chef’s knife to break into small pieces. Toast cinnamon, allspice, peppercorns, and cloves in a dry small skillet over medium-high, tossing, until fragrant, about 2 minutes; let cool.