This week our weather in the mountains has been deliciously cool, with temperatures in the seventies during the day, dropping down into the fifties and low sixties at night. Our windows are open during the day to enjoy the cool breezes and sleep comes easily with the windows open at night under a quilt.
We want to spend as much time as we can outdoors enjoying this crisp autumn weather before it gets cold and we become housebound and have to flee to the warmth of the south.
In the heat of the summer we tend to rely on grilling rather than heat up our kitchens. I think that in the fall when the weather is gorgeous, it’s also the perfect time for grilling. Neither of us pretends to be great grillers, especially moi who doesn’t even know much more than how to turn the gas grill on. This recipe was a joint effort. I put together the marinade and Meakin did the grilling. Works for me.
I may not know much about grilling, but I do know that if you aren’t careful you can overcook chicken, whether on the grill, on the stove, or in the oven. When you overcook it, it will be dry and tough. Marinades bring a lot of flavor to foods that will be grilled and this one is full of flavor with the citrusy oranges and lemons, and the perfume of the rosemary. Regardless of how much flavor you have in the marinade, if you want to preserve the moisture, avoid grilling the chicken too quickly over too high heat because it will end up scorched and dry.
Grilled Citrus Chicken Breasts
Adapted from Bon Appétit – serves 4
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing while grilling
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
½ cup fresh lemon juice
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 teaspoons (or more) fresh rosemary, minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
4 skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts (about 2 ½ to 3 pounds)
2 oranges, cut into quarters
2 lemons, cut into quarters
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves for garnish
In a bowl whisk together the 2 tablespoons of oil and the remaining marinade ingredients. Place chicken breasts in a large zip-lock bag and pour the marinade over the chicken, zip bag, and chill overnight (or at least 3 hours).
Build a medium-low fire in a charcoal grill, or heat a gas grill to medium. Remove chicken breasts from marinade and set marinade aside for later use. Place chicken on grill, skin side up. Cover and grill, moving chicken to different spots on the rack for even cooking but without turning, until slightly charred and almost cooked through, about 20 minutes. Turn chicken. Brush orange and lemon quarters with a little olive oil and arrange around chicken breasts on the grill. Continue grilling until chicken breasts are golden brown and cooked through and orange and lemon quarters are caramelized, about 10 to 15 minutes longer.
Transfer chickens to a platter and surround with grilled oranges and lemons for squeezing. Cover loosely with aluminum foil. While the chicken rests, bring marinade to a boil in a small saucepan and cook until reduced to a glaze consistency (about a third of a cup). Season glaze with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper, then spoon glaze over chickens and garnish with parsley. Can be served hot or at room temperature.
This weekend the John C. Campbell Folk School in nearby Brasstown, North Carolina will be celebrating its 39th Annual Folk Festival on October 6 and 7th.
Located in the scenic Blue Ridge mountains, the Folk School offers year-around weeklong and weekend classes for adults in crafts, art, music, dance, cooking, gardening, nature studies, photography, and writing. On my previous posts you’ve probably noticed how many crafts we have at our local farmer’s market and the Folk School is one of the reasons there are so many talented people in our area. There will be demonstrations at the Festival of some of the crafts that are taught at the school. One example is the woodcarver in the photo above.
Below are a spinner and a broom maker. For information about the Folk School and the classes they offer, click this link. I wrote a post about the Festival a couple of years ago with lots of pictures of the different festivities. Here’s a link.
This will be shared with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farms, Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday, Foodie Friday at Simple Recipes, Foodtastic Friday at Not Your Ordinary Recipes, Seasonal Sunday at the Tablescaper, and On the Menu Monday at Stone Gable.