Thursday, February 20, 2014

Broiled Chicken Marinated in Pomegranate Juice (Nar Suyu ile Izgara Tavuk)

There was a pomegranate in the fruit drawer of my refrigerator for a long time. For weeks and weeks (pomegranates can keep for months) every time I would open the drawer to grab a quick piece of fruit, it would stare at me and I would stare back at it thinking that it is time to eat it. This repeated almost every day for quite some time until finally I had an idea (certainly not a new one) that I could use its juice in my cooking as it is cumbersome to eat the pomegranate. It is more cumbersome to open it and remove all the juicy seeds! Since I finally went through all that trouble to open it and remove the seeds, I thought I would eat half of it. The other half went into the blender to create the juice.
 
With my little ones and my job, it is very hard to find the time to cook or enjoy a piece of fruit by myself. As a person who loves to eat good food, I miss cooking and eating well. For a few months, we tried to eat prepared food since we had no choice (either that or we went hungry), but I got tired of it quickly. Now, I try to cook maybe once or twice a week with whatever is leftover from the boys’ meal ingredients. Since my babies started solid food, I have been cooking their meals as I refuse to give them prepared foods. No matter what, I do make the time to cook for them. I just had to reorganize my priorities. I did try to feed them prepared meals only a couple of times, however I know what I cook for them is far better and healthier. Their meals include but not limited to eggs, salmon, dover sole, chicken, beef, lamb, tofu, fennel, leeks, swiss chard, carrots, beets, collard greens, red, brown or black rice, bulgur, a variety of fruits (fresh and dried), nuts and etc. I also incorporate different types of spices as I want them exposed to these spices early on so they will be open to different types of flavors. I use cumin, cardamom, cinnamon, turmeric, curry, red pepper paste (mild), ground black pepper, red pepper (mild), thyme, garlic, parsley and etc. in their meals. They like it all and I am happy to see that as they are only 15 months old.
 
This chicken recipe was created for them and I added a couple extra pieces. The chicken was delicious. The skin looks burned due to the red pepper paste, but the chicken itself was very moist and flavorful.  With rice and salad, it was just perfect for me. My boys liked it very much too. I hope you will also enjoy it.
 
4 pieces of chicken legs (any part of chicken works)
½ large pomegranate (or 1 small one)
Juice of 2 lemons
1 tsp red pepper paste
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
 
Blend the fresh pomegranate and strain to remove the seeds. Discard the seeds and add the lemon juice, red pepper paste, ground black pepper and 1 tbsp olive oil. Blend again. Puncture the chicken pieces from several places with a fork to allow the sauce to get inside the meat. Place the chicken in the sauce and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
 
 
Remove the chicken from the sauce and place in a baking dish. Sprinkle the salt on both sides of the chicken pieces and drizzle with the rest of the olive oil.
 
Bring the oven to a broil and broil 5-7 minutes on each side or until the chicken is cooked.
 
Note: Ovens may vary, therefore there may be a need to adjust the cooking time. Also, the amount of the pomegranate doesn’t really matter that much as long as you have enough juice to cover all the chicken.
 

3 comments:

Rebecca Subbiah said...

great recipe must try and good to know pomegranate lasts so long

Mediterranean Turkish Cook said...

Thanks Rebecca. Yes, it does. My late grandmother would bury them in the ground in the garden after picking them off of the tree and they would last almost a year! Maybe more...can't remember. She would save them for her sons who lived abroad. I just keep them in the fridge and I know for sure it lasts almost two months there.

Linda said...

Wonderful recipe, thank you so much for sharing.