I've been having a love affair with chicken thighs all summer. It all started when our local grocery ran them on for $.99 per pound. I picked up a large pack, seasoned them with garlic and chipotle powder and threw them on the smoker. It was love at first bite.
Growing up, chicken thighs we the pieces of fried chicken no one wanted - or maybe that was my culinary immaturity. How far they (or I've) come. Thighs, especially boneless, skinless, are so versatile. They are forgiving, and don't dry out like white meat when they're overcooked so they're great for grilling or smoking.
It was Fiesta Thursday around our house and The Wife was enjoying her cucumber lemon margarita. We were in a grilling mood and I found this recipe from Bobby Flay. The flavors sounded perfect. The spicier the better - so I added a few jalapenos. I was only able to let this marinade for one hour - four would have been better, but the flavors were still there. Bobby did a bunch of fancy cutting, using two skewers, but as the distinguished philosopher Sweet Brown said, ain't nobody got time for that. Just thread the skewers as you would with a kabob.
The grilled limes were a pleasant surprise, I'd never done that before. Besides looking really cool for presentation, it gives the chicken a great tang.
We served this with Mexican Street Corn. The perfect pairing for a night of grilling.
Bobby Flay's Yucatan Grilled Chicken
6 Skinless, Boneless Chicken Thighs
1/2 Cup Squeezed Orange Juice
1/4 Cup Squeezed Lime Juice
2 Tablespoons Canola Oil
2 Tablespoons Ancho Chile Powder
3 Garlic Cloves
2 Tablespoons Chipotle in Adobo Sauce
Fist Full of Cilantro
Salt and Pepper
Cilantro for Garnish
Combine the orange juice, lime juice, oil, ancho powder, garlic, cilantro, chipotle, salt and pepper in a food processor and pulse to combine.
Cut chicken thighs in the 2 inch strips and pour marinade over chicken. Let the chicken soak for 1-4 hours.
Thread the chicken onto your skewers and grill on high. My grill ranged started at 600 degrees, but averaged around 400 as I kept opening it to grill I grilled these for 15 minutes, turning frequently.
Cut the limes in half and add, cut side down, to the grill for the last 10 minutes of cooking.
Garnish with more cilantro and a squeeze of grilled lime. Delicious!