Like a lot of people we have been doing plenty of outdoor cooking. First of all it gets you out of the house, secondly if you have guests you don’t have to get too close to each other as in an indoor setting, and thirdly it is much more reasonably priced. But the most important thing in my estimation is it gets you to experiment, something we have been doing in spades. This week we got some great Calamari from Caught on Line , free range chicken from Elgin, fabulous olive oil rom Willow Creek—and , No!—none of it donated but we do believe in using the best things we can. The result was delicious, slightly unusual and immensely satisfying. To lift the dishes we made a fresh tomato and lettuce salad garnished with capers, gherkins and olive oil. We are not including how to braai—to South Africans?? Never!! Lunch was accompanied by a precious bottle of what I think is the best Pinot Noir in the country, Galpin Peak from Bouchard Finlayson, deliciously cooled. Heaven in the garden.
Chinese BBQ Chicken
2 garlic cloves (minced)
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons light soy sauce (or all purpose)
1/2 teaspoon five spice powder
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
750 grams free range chicken thigh fillets (skinless boneless, or breast)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Place Marinade ingredients in a ziplock bag or bowl and mix to combine.
Add chicken and mix to coat. Marinade for 3 – 24 hours.
Precook mielies and set aside to add to the braaing process
Heat half the oil in a heavy based skillet over medium high heat, or BBQ on medium (if using grill side, brush oil on bars).
Remove chicken from marinade (RESERVE for basting) and place in the skillet – cook in 2 batches, do not crowd the pan. Cook for 4 minutes then turn.
Use the Marinade to baste the cooked side of the chicken. After 3 minutes, turn the chicken over so the basted side is now cooking again – cook for 1 minute.
Baste the chicken, then turn again and cook for 45 sec – 1 min.
Transfer chicken to a plate, cover loosely with foil and rest for 5 minutes.
Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari
300 gms calamari tubes and tentacles
1 cup fresh lemon juice
Clean calamari tubes well, running water through the inside. If there is a small membrane or muscle still attached at the bottom, cut this off so water can flow freely through the cylinder. Pat tubes dry.
In a shallow dish, lie whole calamari tubes in a single layer. Cover with fresh lemon juice. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for 40 minutes.
Heat grill to high heat. Remove calamari tubes from the refrigerator and drain lemon juice. Brush grill with vegetable oil and heat to a medium temperature.
Place calamari tubes on indirect grill heat for 2-3 minutes per side do not overcook. Calamari should be white and firm.
Remove from grill to a cutting board. Cut calamari into rings and place into a medium mixing bowl. Toss with cracked pepper.
Serve immediately and while hot. Enjoy your Lemon Pepper Grilled Calamari
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