By Danielle French

Fresh Herb and Buttermilk Chicken on the Grill

This is a delicious way to serve chicken this summer. It is good to start with a farm fresh naturally raised chicken, maybe even organic chicken so you know the flavour already is going to be great and really taste like chicken. Using fresh herbs in your marinade – you can never go wrong. I love incorporating herbs into nearly everything I make during the summer months when herbs are plentiful. Fresh chives on salad, tarragon with yogourt and grapes, mint ice tea… happily there are farmers markets and even grocery store shelves that carry a variety. Nothing says summer like a handful of herbs in a freshly cut salad.

Herb bundles ready for delivery

Buttermilk moistens meat and allows the flavour of the herbs to come through. This chicken can be baked in the oven or on the grill. I made it on the charcoal (green egg) grill I use and I also have the indirect stone that I use quite often so there is no risk of burning.

Taken right out of the vacuum sealed bag

You may purchase our buttermilk chicken or make your own marinade. If you are using our marinated chicken, the first step is to simply cut open the vacuum seal bag. Then place the chicken directly skin side up on a hot grill (about 400-425 degrees) on indirect heat. Cook for about 50-60 minutes or until the breast reads 165 degrees on a thermometer. Let the chicken rest for about 10 minutes. I cut the chicken into 6 parts for our four, but we had lots of leftovers for chicken salad the next day. The chicken didn’t need any extra sauce or even salt which we are fiends of in our family. It was lovely. If you are making it in a roasting pan, again, place the chicken skin side up in a shallow roasting pan in a hot oven, 400 degrees. Bake for approximately 50-60 minutes, again when the thermometer reads 165. Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes before cutting.

I served mine with a chive potato salad, a green salad and a bowl of strawberries for dessert. Yum.

Buttermilk in marinades is a really nice way to marinade especially chicken. Buttermilk has a lower acidity than say wine or vinegar so it moistens without making the meat tough. It also has natural enzymes breaking down the proteins making the meat tender. I make a few different marinades regularly:

Fresh summer marinade

1 cup buttermilk
3 cloves of garlic crushed
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
OR 1 cup of mixed herbs such as chives, parsley
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp salt and pepper

Mix everything together and place chicken pieces or whole spat-chock chicken in a pan or ziplock bag and marinade for at least 6-8 hours.

Spicy buttermilk marinade

1 cup buttermilk
3 cloves garlic crushed
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 ts cinnamon
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt and pepper
1/4 cup honey

Mix the ingredients together thoroughly and marinade the chicken for at least 6-8 hours. I like using these same ingredients in 1 cup of greek yogourt to make a topping for the chicken when it’s served.

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