Monday, May 28, 2012

Paradise Chicken

Since I shared with you an island drink yesterday, I thought that today I would tell you a little bit about that island.  St Kitts, home of Ting, is part of the Caribbean country including its neighboring island Nevis.  Boyfriend and I spent a week there a few years ago and loved every minute of it.

If you are looking for a quiet island with lots to do, this is the place to book your next vacation.  Boyfriend and I were drawn to St Kitts with its promise of lush rain forests, clear blue waters and monkeys!

Yes, monkeys!  The monkeys that live on St Kitts are not naturally from the island and were brought there by the French as pets in the 1600's.  Now they abound in the rain forests and you can even find them by the beaches, drinking your cocktails.  (Enjoy a laugh and google drunken St Kitts monkeys!)

You should definitely judge your vacation location depending on its lack or abundance of monkeys.

We also spent a good portion of time hiking through the rain forest and walking through Basseterre.  We ate locally made ice cream in the port during the day and barbecued chicken on the beach at night.  There was always an abundance of empty beaches with calm water for snorkeling and wave-filled beaches for the acrobat in your family.

We lived on chicken while we were on St Kitts.  The many different beach huts we frequented all offered their delicious poultry options.  For our Caribbean dreams menu, chicken had to be the main course.  I chose a dish with heat, traditionally found on St Thomas.  If you're not a fan of spicy foods, just remove the habanero pepper!

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Paradise Chicken
Adapted from A Taste of the Caribbean Cookbook

I only added half of a habanero pepper and this dish still packed a kick!  If you can't handle a lot of heat, you should omit the habanero or replace it with a serrano pepper.  If you are using the habanero, be careful not to touch the pepper that much.  I actually wore gloves! 

2 tbsp oil
1 lb chicken breast, chopped
1/2 white onion, diced
1 red pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cardamom
1 tbsp paprika
1/2 habanero pepper, seeded & minced
1 1/2 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp brown sugar
juice from 1 lemon
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 cups cooked rice (white or brown)

In a large, deep skillet, heat oil over medium heat.  Add chicken and cook until browned (about 6-8 minutes).  Push chicken to the edges of the skillet.  Add onion, red pepper, garlic, nutmeg, cardamom and paprika.  Saute and cook until onion is translucent.  Stir everything together.  Add habanero, chicken stock, brown sugar and lemon juice.  Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.  Cook for 20 minutes.  Add heavy cream and rice.  Stir and combine.  Delicious.
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