Zesty BBQ Chicken

Zesty BBQ Chicken
Baby-led weaning, Toddler, Kid, Adult

Science Corner
When meat is cooked at high temperatures like when grilling on an open flame, the creatine, amino acids and sugars in the meat form chemical compounds called heterocyclic amines (HCAs) that cause mutations in our DNA and ultimately, at high enough doses, cancer (why does everything that's fun and delicious have a downside?! Boo). Fascinatingly, anti-oxidant rich marinades containing spices like turmeric and certain herbs (basil, oregano, thyme, mint) can substantially reduce HCA formation! This marinade combines several anti-oxidant spices for a flavour and anti-carcinogenic boost. Like I've said on many occasions, if only our conventional meds tasted this good. 

2 adult and 2 kid servings

6 chicken drumsticks, skin removed
1/4 cup plain, full-fat Greek yoghurt
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 cloves garlic crushed
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon plus a large pinch salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (skip for kids)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Melted butter or coconut oil for brushing
1 lime
Chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)

Using a sharp knife, score the skinless chicken drumsticks (i.e. make slits in the meat) and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix together the yoghurt, tomato paste, garlic, ginger salt, pepper and spices. Add the chicken and coat well with the marinade making sure it gets into the slits for more moisture and flavour. Refrigerate for 1-6 hours. 

30 minutes before BBQing or oven roasting, remove the meat from the fridge. If using the oven instead of the BBQ, pre-heat it to 200 C / 400 F.

If BBQing, cook the chicken on a pre-heated grill until done, about 35 minutes, flipping every 5 minutes to ensure even cooking (and to reduce HCA formation, discussed above). Brush with melted butter or oil to prevent it from drying.

Alternatively, roast the chicken in the pre-heated oven for 35 minutes turning every 10 minutes to ensure even cooking. Broil on high for 5 minutes, brushing with melted butter or oil to get a crisper finish. 

Let the chicken rest for 5-10 minutes. Sprinkle with lime juice, garnish with cilantro and serve.