Caribbean spice is such a party for your mouth, we had to step up every element of this lively dish. From caramelised pineapple salsa to coconut rice, each colourful bite is a delight.
mild Caribbean jerk spice blend
long red chilli
baby spinach leaves
salt (for the chicken)
Salt (for the rice)
Drain the pineapple slices, reserving the pineapple juice. Finely chop the long red chilli (if using). Finely chop the tomato and cucumber. Pick and thinly slice the mint leaves (reserve a few for garnish).
Slice the chicken thighs in half. In a medium bowl, add the chicken thigh, mild Caribbean jerk spice blend, salt (for the chicken) and a drizzle of olive oil and toss to coat the chicken. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, combine the coconut milk, water (see ingredients list) and salt (for the rice) and bring to the boil. Add the basmati rice, stir, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 15 minutes, or until the rice is tender and the liquid has absorbed. Season with pepper and stir through the baby spinach leaves until wilted.
While the rice is cooking, heat a medium frying pan over a high heat. Add the pineapple slices and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until lightly charred. Remove from the pan and roughly chop. Transfer to a medium bowl and add the tomato, cucumber, long red chilli (if using), mint and the pineapple juice (1 tbs for 2 people / 2 tbs for 4 people). TIP: Some like it hot but if you don't, just hold back on the chilli. Season to taste with salt and pepper, mix well and set aside.
Return the same frying pan to a medium-high heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. Add the Caribbean chicken and cook, turning occasionally, for 10-14 minutes, or until golden and cooked through. TIP: Don't worry if the spice blend burns a little in the pan, this adds to the traditional flavour!
TIP: For the low calorie option, serve up 1/2 the coconut rice. Divide the coconut rice, Caribbean chicken and caramelised pineapple salsa between plates. Garnish with the reserved mint leaves.