Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune
Grilled chicken with lemon, mint and soy
Note: Adapted from Hugh Acheson's book, "A New Turn in the South: Southern Flavors Reinvented for Your Kitchen" (Clarkson Potter, $35). The original recipe calls for four poussin (young chickens) weighing about 1 pound each. We used chicken legs and thighs with excellent results.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons each: Dijon mustard, fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup each, minced: fresh mint, fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 1/2 to 4 pounds chicken thighs and legs (about 6 medium pieces)
1. Prepare charcoal or gas grill that will give you medium to medium-high heat for 15 to 20 minutes cooking time. If you use charcoal, be sure coals are very gray and cooked down to help prevent flare-ups during cooking.
2. Mix oil, soy sauce, mustard, lemon juice, zest, pepper flakes, mint and parsley in a small bowl. Very lightly salt chicken thighs and legs. Place chicken, skin side down, on grill. Cook, about 8 minutes. Turn pieces skin side up; continue grilling. Divide herb sauce in half, placing portions in separate bowls. Baste tops of chicken with half the herb sauce; reserve remainder for serving. (Don't cross contaminate the bowls of sauce.) Continue grilling until internal temperature registers 165 degrees. Transfer cooked birds to a serving platter; drizzle with reserved herb sauce.
Per serving: 490 calories, 37 g fat, 8 g saturated fat, 209 mg cholesterol, 3 g carbohydrates, 36 g protein, 1,293 mg sodium, 0 g fiber.
Cook time: "Bone-in tends to cook longer but it tends to keep its moisture a little bit," says Acheson.
Basting: Brush sweet sauces on in the last few minutes of cooking or the sugars will burn the bird. "When you're about to pull it off, baste it and you'll see it dry up and caramelize on there," says McInnis.
Basic basting sauce: Or "a mop sauce is what we call it in the South," says McInnis. Just chop up a bunch of herbs and mix with vinegar or lemon (or whatever your acid is) then a tomato product or olive oil (whatever your base is) and "just mop it on."