featured-images-7So while I was sitting at work yesterday, I was contemplating what I should cook next. I knew I had peaches and jalapeños in my kitchen and I wanted to use them before they went bad. As my mind wandered, I stumbled upon the concept of Thai Mango Chicken, which I really like, and I thought, why not make a version with my peaches and jalapeños?! I bet it would be delicious, albeit significantly less Thai-ish.  So when I got home I raided my kitchen and flew by the seat of my pants to create Peachy Chicken with Bourbon and Jalapeño.  I think it come out pretty well! It is less spicy than I pictured, but that’s ok since I’m a wuss when it comes to spice. (Silly girl, why use jalapeños if you can’t take the heat? ‘Cause I love the flavor.) As a note – this dish just gets better after a night in the fridge because everything really comes together. Mmmmm…yummy leftovers.

So here’s what I came up with:

3 chicken breasts
1 green onion
2 cups sliced peaches
3 tbsp white wine or cider vinegar
1 tsp brown sugar
big chunk of fresh ginger
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 C bourbon (what?!! YES!!)
1 clove garlic
approx 15 mint leaves
approx 10 basil leaves
1 – 3 jalapeño, depending on your love of spiciness
1 tsp salt
2 bell peppers (green/red)
1 onion (I used vidalia, but yellow should be fine)

Special equipment: you’re going to need a food processor or blender.

The sauce:
Slice and seed the jalapeño(s) (unless you want the seeds – adds more heat) and throw it (them) in the food processor bowl. Roughly chop about 2 tbsp of fresh ginger and add to the bowl.

Peel and slice the peaches over a bowl or the food processor bowl to catch all that good peach juice. Add the peaches & collected peach juice, green onion, brown sugar, cinnamon, vinegar, 1/3 C bourbon, garlic, mint, basil and salt to the bowl.  Blend until smooth (or mostly smooth). Taste. Add some more jalapeño if you think it needs more spice. Or more bourbon. Whichever. When I had the sauce as I wanted it, it put it in a ziplock and threw it in the fridge for a few hours, but you can skip ahead to the cooking if you’re in a rush.

When you are ready to get cooking, heat up a large skillet or sauté pan with some olive oil and slice up the chicken into long strips. When the pan is hot, throw in the chicken.

While that’s cooking, slice up the red and green bell peppers, the onion and the remaining ginger. I never quite got over going to chinese restaurants in London where they include big chunks of ginger in a lot of their dishes. I love ginger and think we, as a culture, should endeavor to use it more boldly than we currently do, so go to town on the ginger.

When the chicken is just cooked through, take it out and reserve it for later. Now take out some of the leftover bourbon and toss it in the pan to deglaze. If you don’t know what deglaze means, basically it is throwing liquid in a hot pan to unstick all that stuff that is stuck to the pan. There’s generally a lot of good flavor there and it’s a technique commonly used in making sauces and gravy.

So deglaze the pan with about 1/2 of the remaining bourbon and use your spatula to help get up some of the stuff. Then pour in the sauce and let it get hot and bubbly.

Once the sauce is hot, add in the peppers, onion and ginger and cook until the onion is somewhat translucent. If you’re feeling really daring, you could throw in more jalapeño as well.  When the veg is cooked, add the chicken back in and cook it all together for a while. Add the rest of the bourbon and then taste and season with salt.

I served the dish with delicious jasmine rice. It actually turned out to be a pretty light and refreshing sauce with the jalapeño flavor, but not a lot of heat. Sometimes people also make peach sauces way too sweet, but this one isn’t cloying at all. And the ginger adds nice zip when you get one of those bites! :)

final 4

Kitchen Adventures, or Peachy Chicken with Bourbon & Jalapeno
 
Recipe By:
Ingredients
  • 3 chicken breasts
  • 1 green onion
  • 2 cups sliced peaches
  • 3 tbsp white wine or cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • big chunk of fresh ginger
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¾ C bourbon
  • 1 clove garlic
  • approx 15 mint leaves
  • approx 10 basil leaves
  • 1 - 3 jalapeño, depending on your love of spiciness
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 bell peppers (green/red)
  • 1 onion (I used vidalia, but yellow should be fine)
Instructions
  1. The sauce:
  2. Slice and seed the jalapeño(s) (unless you want the seeds - adds more heat) and throw it (them) in the food processor bowl. Roughly chop about 2 tbsp of fresh ginger and add to the bowl.
  3. Peel and slice the peaches over a bowl or the food processor bowl to catch all that good peach juice. Add the peaches & collected peach juice, green onion, brown sugar, cinnamon, vinegar, ⅓ C bourbon, garlic, mint, basil and salt to the bowl. Blend until smooth (or mostly smooth). Taste. Add some more jalapeño if you think it needs more spice. Or more bourbon. Whichever. When I had the sauce as I wanted it, it put it in a ziplock and threw it in the fridge for a few hours, but you can skip ahead to the cooking if you're in a rush.
  4. When you are ready to get cooking, heat up a large skillet or sauté pan with some olive oil and slice up the chicken into long strips. When the pan is hot, throw in the chicken.
  5. While that's cooking, slice up the red and green bell peppers, the onion and the remaining ginger. I never quite got over going to chinese restaurants in London where they include big chunks of ginger in a lot of their dishes. I love ginger and think we, as a culture, should endeavor to use it more boldly than we currently do, so go to town on the ginger.
  6. When the chicken is just cooked through, take it out and reserve it for later. Now take out some of the leftover bourbon and toss it in the pan to deglaze. If you don't know what deglaze means, basically it is throwing liquid in a hot pan to unstick all that stuff that is stuck to the pan. There's generally a lot of good flavor there and it's a technique commonly used in making sauces and gravy.
  7. So deglaze the pan with about ½ of the remaining bourbon and use your spatula to help get up some of the stuff. Then pour in the sauce and let it get hot and bubbly.
  8. Once the sauce is hot, add in the peppers, onion and ginger and cook until the onion is somewhat translucent. If you're feeling really daring, you could throw in more jalapeño as well. When the veg is cooked, add the chicken back in and cook it all together for a while. Add the rest of the bourbon and then taste and season with salt.
  9. Serve over rice.