Chicken piri piri - Portugese recipe
Chicken piri piri
The Portugese are addicted to piri piri sauce, made from the piri piri chillies which they introduced to areas of Africa which they colonized, eg Mozambique. The traditional Portugese piri-piri chili is very small and FIERY!
2 chickens, about 1kg each, spatchcocked or 4 poussins spatchcocked
Salt and freshly ground pepper (to your taste)
1 tsp sugar
Small handful of mint, chopped
Small handful of coriander, chopped (leaves and stalks)
For the piri-piri sauce:
6 -12 fresh red chillies, depending on how hot you want it
1 tbsp garlic, chopped and poached
1 tsp salt flakes
100ml olive oil
50ml red wine vinegar
First make the piri-piri sauce, as follows: Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4. Place the chillies in a roasting tray and roast them for 10 minutes. Cool and roughly the chop the chillies. Place the chillies, garlic, salt, olive oil and vinegar in a saucepan, bring to the simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes. Allow to cool, then blend to a puree in a blender or food processor. Store in a lidded container at room temperature; it will keep for about a month. Shake before using.
Place the spatch-cocked chickens in a sealable plastic bag. Add in half the piri-piri sauce, spreading it evenly over the chickens. Seal and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6. Preheat a large griddle pan on the hob. Season the marinated chicken with salt and freshly pepper. Cook the chicken on the griddle for 2-3 minutes on each side, until golden brown on each side. Transfer the griddled chicken to a roasting tray and roast in the oven for 30 minutes, until cooked through.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan. Add in the sugar and the remaining piri-piri sauce and heat through gently, stirring now and then. Keep the sauce warm and just before serving stir in the mint and coriander.
To serve, cut the chicken into portions and toss with the mint and coriander sauce.
Traditionally, chicken piri piri is served with salt baked new potatoes, salad and lemon wedges.