weeknight gourmet

Category : Sauce

End of Summer BBQ: Barbecue Chicken

We had this delicious barbecue chicken on Sunday.  Everyone loved it!  It is definitely more work than using a store-bought sauce but I think it is worth it.  The rub imparts some spice and the sauce has sweetness from the molasses.

No changes to the recipe other than only using bone-in, skin-on breasts.  And, next time I might make the sauce a day in advance because the leftover chicken tasted even more delicious!

Tim cooked the chicken perfectly — very moist.  We served the chicken with grilled corn, tomato & mozzarella salad, and tri colore orzo.  A great end of summer combination!
Best Barbecue Chicken
Everyday Food

  • Vegetable oil, for grates
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 chicken (about 3 pounds), cut into 10 pieces
  • 2 cups Simple Barbecue Sauce (recipe below)

Heat grill to medium; lightly oil grates. In a small bowl, combine paprika, chili powder, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; sprinkle spice rub all over chicken. Reserve 1 cup barbecue sauce in a bowl for serving. Keep remaining sauce in another bowl for basting.

Grill chicken, turning often, until cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes (if browning too quickly, move to cooler part of grill). During final 5 minutes of cooking, baste chicken with barbecue sauce. Serve chicken with reserved sauce.

Simple Barbecue Sauce

Everyday Food

  • 3 cups ketchup
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium, and simmer until sauce is thickened and reduced by a third (about 30 minutes).

Let cool to room temperature before using.

Makes 3 1/2 cups.

Can be refrigerated up to 2 weeks.

Friday Night Fiesta! Chicken Chilaquiles


It was a stormy afternoon and evening in the Berkshires so I thought some Mexican food would bring a little brightness to the day!  Last time we were in Mexico, the hotel we stayed at had delicious chilaquiles that they served for breakfast (apparently that is when they are traditionally served).  Since Tim and I both loved them, I figured I’d try making them myself!

A bit about chilaquiles from Wikipedia:

Chilaquiles are a traditional Mexican dish.  Typically, corn tortilla cut in quarters and fried are the basis of the dish. Green or red salsa or mole, is poured over the crispy tortilla triangles, called “totopos.” The mixture is simmered until the tortilla starts softening. Eggs (scrambled or fried) and pulled chicken are sometimes added to the mix. The dish is topped with cheese (typically queso fresco) and/or sour cream (crema), and it is served with refried beans.

I didn’t change anything in the recipe and it turned out really well.

The sauce starts off with a roux to which you added garlic, lots of spices, and chicken broth.  I was surprised there was not tomato paste or crushed tomatoes added because the chilaquiles we had in Mexico definitely had tomato in them.  If you want to cut the heat a bit, try adding some tomato puree or paste.

Rather than frying corn tortillas, this recipe calls for tortilla chips.  I used Restaurant Style Tostitos because that’s what my local Price Chopper had.

I just cooked the chicken breasts in a frying pan and sliced/shredded them once they cooled a bit.

As the recipe calls for, I served the chilaquiles with feta, red onion, cilantro, and sour cream.  I also added some green Tabasco to my plate.

We both definitely needed some cold drinks after eating this dish but we both loved it!

Chicken Chilaquiles
Food & Wine

  • 3 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
  • 1 1/3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 4 in all)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  • 1/2 pound tortilla chips
  • 1/4 pound feta, crumbled (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 red onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves

In a small bowl, combine the paprika, chili powder, cayenne, cumin, sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt.

In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately low heat. Add the flour and cook, whisking, until golden, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic; cook for 30 seconds. Add the paprika and chili powder mixture and then add the broth slowly, whisking, until smooth. Bring to a simmer. Simmer, covered, until thick enough to coat a spoon, about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over moderate heat. Season the chicken with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and the pepper and cook until browned and just done, about 5 minutes per side. Remove the chicken from the pan and let it rest for 5 minutes. Cut crosswise into slices.

Add the tortilla chips to the chile sauce and cook, stirring, until the chips are soft but not falling apart, about 2 minutes. Put the sauce on plates and top with the feta, sour cream, onion, cilantro, and chicken.

Serves 4.

Balsamic BBQ Sauce

We had guests in the Berkshires this weekend — our friends Jason, Maria and their son Peter and Jared, Molly and their pooch Griffey.

Everyone was on target to arrive around 9pm on Friday.  We had been hoping to arrive around 7pm but our drive took over an hour longer than normal due to torrential rain and terrible traffic.  I didn’t have much time to put dinner together but I figured grilled veggies and flank steak would be quick.  To jazz up the flank steak, I decided to make this barbecue sauce to brush on the steak before grilling.

The sauce was terrific on the steak and would be wonderful on chicken as well.

Balsamic BBQ sauce
Giada De Laurentiis

  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and stir until all the ingredients are incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Simmer over medium heat until reduced by 1/3, about 15 to 20 minutes.