Monday, May 12, 2014

Indonesian Blackout Chicken
During a wind storm a couple of months ago, we were sitting in the living room enjoying a little peace while the kids were playing quietly upstairs (i.e. they weren't fighting, bickering or asking us for things). Suddenly, outside our window, sparks were flying, loud "pops" were sounding and then nothing but darkness. The kids came running downstairs asking why fireworks were going off down the street. Turns out a very large and very old tree couldn't stand up to the strong winds and decided to go out with a bang - it fell across a street, taking a power pole with it and crushing a car for good measure. Thankfully, even though it's a busy corner, no one was hurt. Power, however, would be out for the night and the next morning.

Luckily, we had planned to BBQ our dinner. I know you're thinking "why would you plan on grilling in a wind and rain storm?" We BBQ all year round and, yes, in any weather (and by we, I mean my husband). This recipe was adapted from Saveur. The original recipe makes skewers but we bypass that and use whole thighs and cut up breasts.

That night, thanks to the power outage, we had a fun dinner by candle light and we dubbed the dish "Blackout Chicken." The kids LOVE this chicken because it's full of flavour but not spicy. In fact, it's now in our regular rotation.

Serves 6.


1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp ground coriander
2 tbsp tumeric
2 tsp salt
2 stalks lemon grass, chopped
1 head garlic, separated and peeled (at least 5 cloves)
6 mediums shallots
2 larges pieces if ginger (about 8-10 inches in total), cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 tbsp ground fennel or 2- 3 tbsp fresh fennel
1 tsp ground curry

5-6 lbs chicken thighs or breasts or combo.


  1. Blend everything except chicken in a food processor until a thick but relatively smooth paste is formed.
  2. If using breast, cut them in half or about the same size as a medium thigh. Using a smooth sided mallet or cast iron pan flatten the chicken pieces so they are all the same approximate thickness. This will help the chicken cook at the same rate.
  3. Place the chicken in a bowl or ziploc bag and pour the marinade over the chicken. Massage the marinade into the chicken so every nook and crevice gets its fair share.
  4. Seal or cover the chicken and marinade for 2-6 hours.
  5. Heat your grill to medium-high. Once hot, place chicken and cook for 5-9 minutes per side until chicken reaches 165 degrees F and juices run clear and bits of the chicken are charred).
  6. Place on serving dish and let sit for 5 minutes. Serve with rice and your favorite vegetables.

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