My Wife’s Notes – Rigamarole Red – Piri Piri Chicken

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Piri Piri Chicken

  • 4-6 pieces chicken
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 lemons
  • 1/2 in piece of fresh ginger, chopped
  • 3/4 cup fresh chopped cilantro
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1 bottle Nando’s Piri Piri Sauce
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 large bell peppers
  • rice

NOTE: The chicken needs to be marinated for a minimum of 4 hours before cooking.  Prep the meal the morning of, or even the day before serving for best results.

Start by making the marinade.  Place 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, chopped ginger, shallot and garlic in a food processor, and blend until finely chopped.  Add 3/4 of the bottle of Piri Piri sauce (about 1/2 cup), 1/2 cup olive oil, the juice of 1 lemon, and a little salt and pepper, and blend until throughly mixed.

Spoon about a third of the marinade on the bottom of an oven dish, and place the chicken in the dish.  Smother the chicken with the rest of the marinade, cover the dish and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.

When you’re ready to cook the meal, preheat the oven to 350F. De-stem and seed the bell peppers, and slice into 1 inch wide strips.  Place the strips on top of the chicken, rubbing them with the marinade.  Place the dish in the oven when hot, and cook until chicken is cooked through, approximately 45 minutes.

While the chicken is in the oven, cook the rice on the stove or in a rice cooker.  Once the rice is tender, add the remaining 1/4 cup of cilantro, a small splash of olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice, and stir.

Place the chicken on a bed of rice, place several slices of bell pepper on the side, and spoon a generous serving of sauce from the oven dish over the plate. Add a few cilantro leaves on top, a slice of lemon on the side, and serve.

Last week I was introduced to quite possibly the greatest potato chips the world has ever seen.

I met up in Kamloops with several photographer friends, and one of them brought a bag of President’s Choice Spicy Piri Piri chips. They were amazing. This is the Moët & Chandon of snack food.

I’d never actually heard of Piri Piri before this, but the Internet has taught me that piri piri is the colloquial term for the African Bird’s Eye chili.  Piri Piri Chicken, the most well known dish to use this pepper, is Portuguese in origin.  Spicy and flavorful, the dish is every bit as good as the chips.  Maybe, dare I say it, even better?

With all the spice going on in this dish, I chose an old stand-by to pair it with.  Rigamarole Red is one of the best values out there: at $12.99 per bottle, it makes a perfect table wine and tastes better than many $20+ bottles out there.

My Notes:

A medium red in the glass, this wine gives off a bright berry-like aroma.  It is a soft and gentle red, obviously designed to appeal to the masses. It is aromatic in the mouth, with berry and plum flavors. The blend of Gamay, Pinot Noir and Merlot grapes creates a very pleasant, balanced wine, and although it doesn’t excite or intrigue the senses, it tastes great and goes well with pretty much any food you throw at it. 88 points.

My Wife’s Notes:

“I cannot WAIT to see the Hunger Games tonight!!! It is going to be just amazing. What? Oh yeah, I like this. It’s tasty.”

Rigamarole Red. $12.99 at BC Liquor Stores.

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