Jerk Chicken with Coconut Rice and Summer Vegetables
If you can't go to the Caribbean right now, at least your kitchen can feel like a beachy, island paradise. How, you ask? With our brand new jerk chicken, smothered in a house spice blend and seared to crisp-skinned perfection. Served with fragrant coconut rice and a side of summery sautéed vegetables, this dinner will have you feeling that sea breeze.
Total cook time
- 1 13.5-ounce can lite coconut milk
- 1 1/2 cups jasmine rice
- 4 boneless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons Jamaican jerk seasoning
- 12 ounces summer squash
- 12 ounces zucchini
- 2 limes
- 4 scallions
- 1 cup peas
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- kosher salt
- black pepper
Open coconut milk (see Recipe Tip) and pour into a small pot. Add rice, 1 cup water, and .5 teaspoon salt, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium low, cover, and simmer until liquid is fully absorbed, 15-17 minutes. Remove pot from heat and let stand, still covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork, then cover again to keep warm until Step 4.
While rice cooks, pat chicken dry with paper towel and arrange skin-side down between 2 large pieces plastic wrap (see Recipe Tip). Using a meat mallet or heavy pan, pound to .25-inch thickness. Then, rub chicken all over with jerk seasoning, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper as desired. Set aside to marinate at room temperature until ready to cook.
While chicken marinates, rinse all produce. Halve summer squash and zucchini lengthwise, then cut crosswise into .5-inch half-moons, discarding ends. Halve 1 lime and set aside for Step 5; cut remainder into 4 wedges for serving. Trim and discard scallion roots and thinly slice.
Heat 2 tablespoons canola oil in a large nonstick pan over medium-high heat. When oil is shimmering, add squash and zucchini and cook until golden brown and tender, 7-8 minutes. Stir in peas to warm through, 1 minute more. Transfer vegetables to a large bowl, reserving pan for cooking chicken. Add coconut rice, half of scallions, .5 teaspoon salt, and pepper to bowl with vegetables. Stir to combine, then set aside.
Return pan from vegetables to medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons canola oil. When oil is shimmering, add chicken skin-side down, working in batches and adding oil as needed. Sear, pressing down with a spatula (and standing back in case hot oil splatters), until skin is crisp, 3-4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Flip chicken and sear until spices are browned and chicken is no longer pink, 5-7 minutes more. Then, squeeze over juice of 1 lime.
Divide coconut rice and summer vegetables among serving plates, top with jerk chicken, and garnish with remaining scallions. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over. Dig in!
All recipe ingredients should be cooked to a safe internal temperature according to USDA guidelines. After preparing a recipe, please store any leftovers in the refrigerator.