It was my time to cook tonight and I decided to try something a little different. Leslie brought home a bunch of nice organic chicken drumsticks yesterday and I decided to make the Peruvian chicken dish Pollo a la brasa.
We are nuts about Peruvian chicken, Les made her own version a week ago but mine was to be different. I wanted to make my first aji verde sauce, a staple of Peru.
But guess what, nowhere to be found, must be purchased at extravagant cost online. So I zigged a little bit and modified the recipe. Bought fresh mint instead and added a serrano pepper at Northgate for a bit more kick.
The first thing I did was prepare the marinade. I used a lime, soy, aji amarilla paste, aji panca powder, six cloves of garlic, olive oil, paprika, coriander, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper.
The recipe I was loosely following suggested adding honey, I couldn't find it and didn't think it was necessary so I omitted it. Also ixnayed the shallots. I squeezed a fresh valencia orange in from my garden for good measure. They are super sweet right now.
The legs sat in their cozy marinade bath in the fridge while I got to work on the aji verde.
I can't begin to describe how luscious this is, what a unique flavor set with the aji spice.
No wonder Peruvians are so crazy about it, being the preferred dip for their french fries, not to mention chicken.
I took the legs out of the fridge after an hour and dredged them because I like dredging my chicken and getting it a bit more browned and crispy.
Seared them on the Le Creuset skillet on the cooktop in peanut oil for about five minutes.
After they released I poured the rest of the marinade on top, into the oven for 45 minutes at 350 degrees.
Perfectly cooked, to my liking anyway, tented them with foil and let them sit for a bit.
Not sure why but the recipes say to do it and I am trying to follow directions these days, at least occasionally.
Leslie went out to do something with the girls tonight so I await her verdict but I thought both the chicken and sauce was phenomenally good.
If you like these sorts of flavors, give this recipe a shot.