Peruvian style chicken is one of our favorite meals. It’s delicious, quick and easy. I always have what’s needed to make the marinade and I’m guessing you do, too. In the winter, I roast the garlic and make a whole chicken, as I did for this Food52 recipe posted ages ago, but in the summer, I love to grill chicken thighs. It’s a bright, spicy, citrusy chicken that partners perfectly with every single vegetable at the market right now.
Select good chicken. I like to break down entire chickens into pieces because that is the most economical, but for weeknight dinners, my farmers market friends have packages of cut up chicken thighs available and I’m okay with that.
Serve with rice or corn on the cob and something green and beautiful. Summer’s here. Make a colorful plate. And snap a photo quickly, before it disappears.
Peruvian Style Grilled Chicken Thighs
Serves 4. Leftovers are unlikely.
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
3 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon smoked hot paprika
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
8 bone-in, skin on plump chicken thighs, each about 4 ounces (If using boneless thighs, marinate only 20 minutes before grilling.)
Oil or Spray for the grill
With a vegetable peeler, remove six or seven swaths of lemon peel and place in a large bowl. Juice the lemons into the bowl, then add the remaining marinade ingredients. Whisk well and add the chicken thighs, stir and combine all the ingredients and cover.
Refrigerate the chicken for 30 minutes (or up to 2 hours- after that, the acid in the marinade can make the chicken tough.)
Brush or spray the grill with oil and heat to 400°F. I heat only one half of the grill, to cook both directly and indirectly.
Remove the chicken from the marinade and dry it well with paper towels. This will help reduce flare ups.
Start the chicken skin side up on the direct heat side of the grill until the chicken releases easily, about 4 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook until it releases, about 4 more minutes. Move to the indirect heat side of the grill and cook until done (internal temperature of 180°), about 5 minutes more.