19 November 2015

Scotch Bonnet Chicken

Not for sissies!

We haven't put anything on this blog for quite a while but the Scotch Bonnet harvest is in, and while it was sadly diminished compared to our bumper crop of 2014 (France had a drought for several months this summer which made the plants miserable), the couple dozen that ripened are exquisitely perfumed! If someone could bottle it, I would wear eau de Scotch Bonnet,  I really would. 

So last year, as one does, I googled habaneros and Scotch Bonnets, looking for a main course where they were the stars of the show, and well,  there were hardly any, so I invented this dish. Just made it again and decided it was a keeper. It really does brings out the perfume and taste of your fresh Scotch Bonnets! 


A chicken, cut into pieces
Olive oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 red bell pepper, chopped in cubes
1 Scotch Bonnet , finely chopped (more if you like it really really hot). If your skin is sensitive, consider wearing rubber gloves; whatever you do don’t rub your eyes afterwards!)
A generous handful of halved cherry tomatoes
5 Tb of lime juice
2 Tb light soy sauce
1 Tb honey
1 tablespoon turmeric
300 gr of fresh or frozen spinach
2 Tb butter
A big handful of fresh coriander (cilantro), chopped


Heat a few splashes of olive oil in a heavy pot with a lid. When hot, brown the chicken, then remove.

In the same olive oil, fry the minced ginger, garlic, red pepper and Scotch bonnet until soft. 

Replace browned chicken  in the pot. Add a cup of water, the cherry tomatoes, lime juice, soy sauce, honey and turmeric, and bring to a boil; cover and simmer

In half an hour see how hot it is. Add salt and spinach (add more if it’s too hot!), and more lime juice to taste. Cook for another ten minutes or so until the chicken is done.

Add a chicken stock cube if you feel it needs it. If the sauce is too liquidy, remove the chicken and boil it down (rather than overcook the chicken). Throw in some butter to make it better, put the chicken back in the pot, mix in the fresh coriander and serve on rice.