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Chicken and Cilantro Week-Recipe #1: Trinidad Stewed Chicken

Posted Oct 02 2008 4:20pm
Trinidad Stewed Chicken as posted on

1 (4 pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces
3 tablespoons finely chopped green onion
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon chopped onion
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup water
1/2 cup canned coconut milk (optional)
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon butter

Place chicken on a plate. Sprinkle the green onion, cilantro, garlic, onion, salt and pepper over it. Cover, and marinate for 30 minutes.

Heat the vegetable oil in a deep pot over medium heat. Stir in the sugar, and cook until the sugar has melted into a nice golden brown syrup. Add the chicken pieces, and brown quickly while turning continuously. Cover the pot, and let it cook for 2 minutes.

Pour in 1 cup of water, coconut milk and pepper flakes. Replace the lid, and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the ketchup and butter. Continue cooking until chicken is fork tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Serve chicken with the sauce in the pot as a gravy.

My Notes:

I'm not so sure how I feel about this one-the taste is decent, but I think something is missing. Maybe some more heat? Chunks of tomatoes? Maybe even some lentils?

I think I'm not very keen on the whole "coconut" in savory style dishes. Not sure what it is-but I had a coconut-cilantro rice dish once that I couldn't even stomach. I thought it was just a fluke-bad cook or something, but this almost gave me the same feeling. This is not that bad-but its just not great in my opinion either. I think though my palette just might not enjoy that flavor combo.

I do think I might try to make it again though-sans coconut milk and maybe even sans cilantro. The beginning part of the recipe alone smells fantastic so I think that might make a great dish. The brown sugar, garlic, onion black pepper and salt with the chicken really smells almost sweet and nutty as it cooks together.

Like I say-it wasn't bad-just maybe not my thing, or might just need something else to make it really come to life. I should also say that the broth that it makes tastes very much like an Indian Soup. I think that's why I feel like maybe lentils might really make the dish.

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