Peruvian Roast Chicken in Green Sauce Recipe

I tried this Peruvian roast chicken in green sauce recipe for the first time last week, and I can’t stop eating it! It’s not just the chicken either, it’s the sauce. I loooove the sauce. I made enough to have extra, and I’ve been putting it on everything. It’s tangy, spicy, garlicky, and just spectacular.  And the chicken is lip-smackingly good too!

There are two stages to this recipe, which I adapted from Epicurious, but since we’re only making it for one person (instead of a whole chicken) we can cut some steps and speed everything up. The reviews on the original commented that it was a lot of work (but worth the trouble). But, my way, it isn’t a lot of bother at all.  There’s a lot less to chop and a single chicken thigh cooks a lot faster than a whole bird. You wait less and you don’t have to baste as much either. No need to butterfly/spatchcock one piece of chicken!

First you mix up a spice rub for the chicken and spread it on the meat. While the chicken cooks, you make up the sauce, which is essentially tossing ingredients in a mini chopper or blender and then mixing them together with some mayonnaise. Baste the chicken once and then serve it with the sauce.

The chicken cooks at a higher temperature than usual, so it ends up with crispy skin, while still retaining its juices. Plus, it’s ready in 35-40 minutes instead of an hour and a half.

If you like, you can add a salad of cucumber, avocado, lime, olive oil, and scallions on the side.




Peruvian Roast Chicken in Green Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Category: dinner

Cuisine: Peruvian

one serving

peruvian roast chicken with green sauce

Tangy, garlicky and spicy, this chicken ends up with crispy skin outside and juicy meat inside. It looks so good (and tastes better) you can serve it for company. You may not want to share though.

Ingredients

    Chicken
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 3/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 3/4 tsp olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp tablespoon paprika
  • grinding black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 3/8 tsp kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 fresh lemon
  • 1 chicken thigh
    Green Sauce
  • 1/4 C spinach leaves, packed
  • 1/2 medium jalapeño, chopped (keep or remove the seeds depending on your spice tolerance)
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped fine
  • 3/4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lime juice
  • pinch kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon mayonnaise

Instructions

    Chicken
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F and move a rack to the center of the oven.
  2. Mix the spices and half the salt together in a bowl, and cut the lemon in quarters. Add the zest from one of the quarters (about 1/4 teaspoon) to the spice mixture. Then squeeze the second quarter to get about one and a half teaspoons of lemon juice. Add that to the spice mixture.
  3. Rub chicken thigh on both sides with the zested quarter and squeeze the juice over the meat.
  4. Loosen the skin on the chicken thigh and rub half the spice mixture both over and under the skin. Then season with the rest of the salt.
  5. Place the chicken on a small roasting pan and roast for 15 minutes. Then brush the skin with the rest of the spice mixture and the juices from the pan. Roast another 20-25 minutes. Check to see that the juices run clear and the chicken is fully cooked.
  6. Remove from the oven, and let it rest for 5 minutes.
    Green Sauce
  1. Purée the spinach, jalapeño, garlic, oil, lime juice, and remaining salt in a mini chopper or blender until thoroughly mixed.
  2. Add mayonnaise and purée until well blended. Transfer to a small bowl and serve drizzled over the chicken. This will keep in the fridge for several days.

Notes

If you don't have a fresh lemon, you can use dried lemon peel and bottled lemon juice instead.

Peruvian Roast Chicken with Green Sauce Substitutions and Variations

Unlike the usual changes, this list is largely focused on the sauce, rather than the chicken.

  • Try different herbs or combinations of herbs and leafy greens instead of the spinach. You could use basil, coriander (the original recipe), or some sage
  • Instead of mayonnaise, try Greek yogurt or lebne
  • Serve the sauce over eggs with crusty bread
  • Use the sauce as a dip with fresh cut up carrots, tomatoes, bell peppers, and cucumber wedges
  • if you don’t have fresh lemon, use dried lemon peel and bottled lemon juice

More Chicken Recipes

Crispy Lemon Chicken Thigh Recipe for One

Chili Citrus Chicken Thigh Recipe for One

Quick Chicken Mango Stir Fry Recipe

Feta Brined Roast Chicken




Vietnamese Baked Chicken with Lime

Great for a weeknight dinner, this Vietnamese baked chicken with lime is an easy meal that requires very little active work.  Measure, mince, and pour, then let it sit.  Once it’s finished marinating, all you have to do is cook it for half an hour. The ginger and garlic are warm and spicy, while the chili garlic sauce has a bit of a kick. The lime adds brightness and a citrusy tang that complements the spicy flavors and cools them down. 

The original recipe called for chili garlic paste, palm sugar, and fish sauce.  And, it’s true, those ingredients would be more authentic. However, they also violate my own rules about avoiding  hard-to-find or one use ingredients.  I don’t want to buy an entire bottle or brick of something (like palm sugar) just to have it sit there. And where would I even find palm sugar? Nope.

So, I cheated.  I used chili garlic sauce (not paste), swapped brown sugar for palm sugar, and ditched the fish sauce in favor of Worcestershire sauce (which does have some anchovies in it). I also wanted (for personal preference) to avoid all the salt in the fish sauce.

Marinating, even for a short time, helps the chicken absorb lots of flavor. Just don’t let it sit too long or it will get mushy from the citrus.

When you’re ready to start cooking, just pour out the marinade, pop the chicken in the oven, and wait half an hour. Dinner is done!




Vietnamese Baked Chicken with Lime

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Category: dinner

Cuisine: Vietnamese

one

Vietnamese baked chicken with lime

Ingredients

  • 1 chicken thigh (leave the skin and bone in place)
  • 1T soy sauce
  • 1 T Worcestershire sauce (if you like fish sauce, use that)
  • 1 T brown sugar
  • 3/4 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/4 tsp lime zest
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 T cooking oil

Instructions

  1. lIn a small bowl, mix the marinade ingredients (soy sauce, Worcestershire, sugar, ginger, chili garlic sauce, lime juice and zest, garlic and oil).  Pour that into a zip lock bag, and add the chicken.  Close the bag, and shake it around so the marinade covers the chicken.Let that sit for half an hour, or up to four hours (in the fridge).
  2. About fifteen minutes before you’re ready to cook, remove the tray from your toaster oven and line it with foil. Then preheat the toaster oven to 425 degrees. Also take the chicken out of the fridge to come to room temperature.
  3. Take the chicken out of the bag and set it on top of a wire rack, skin side up,  and then place the rack over the lined toaster oven tray.  This will reduce cleanup a bit and help keep the chicken from getting soggy.
  4. Bake for about 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven and let the chicken rest for five minutes. Serve with rice and garnish with lime.

Vietnamese Baked Chicken with Lime Substitutions and Variations

  • add some soy sauce to the marinade
  • swap the lime zest for lemongrass (you can buy lemongrass paste, which is easier to find in western markets than the stalks)
  • chop up some cilantro and add that to the marinade
  • if you do like fish sauce, I’m told Red Boat and Three Crabs are good brands (avoid the Taste of Thai, it’s full of sugar)

More Chicken Recipes

One Pot Chicken with Balsamic Vinegar Sauce

Jewish Chicken Curry Chitarnee

Crispy Lemon Chicken Thigh Recipe for One

Chili Citrus Chicken Thigh Recipe for One




Chopped Israeli Salad for One Person

Chopped Israeli salad isn’t quite what you might assume. It doesn’t have lettuce or carrots.  It’s not even eaten when you’d expect. Israeli salad isn’t for lunch or dinner. Instead people eat it for breakfast with eggs, hummus, pita bread, fish, and olives. Not being much of a standard American breakfast person, I approve!

Of course, all of those things make a great lunch too, especially on a hot day when  you don’t want to get anywhere near a stove or an oven. I adapted this recipe from a comment on Tori Avery’s web site. 

She had a recipe for Israeli salad, and a commenter, Schelly Talalay Dardashti, pointed out that there’s a Persian version called “salad e-shirazi.”

She said it calls for red onion and parsley (neither of which I had).  However, I did decide to follow her suggestion and use lime juice instead of lemon juice and add mint.

Make sure to use either Persian cucumbers or English cucumbers (rather than the standard kind).  The Persian (or mini) cucumbers are shorter and thinner than standard cucumbers and usually sold in sealed packages.  The English (or hothouse) cucumbers are the long, skinny ones individually wrapped in plastic wrap.

They’re easier to cut up and you don’t have to peel them! Also, the standard cukes tend to be more bitter.

I cut everything up, mixed it together, and left it out on the counter for a couple of hours (there’s nothing to spoil quickly) so that the flavors would blend.  Also, if you put tomatoes in the fridge, they start to lose their flavor.

You can serve this salad with the pita and etc. I mentioned above for a light meal or as a side dish with a sandwich or some eggs. You can make plain scrambled eggs, a frittata, or keep the Persian theme going and serve it with Persian eggs. I added about 1/4 C of eggplant I had left over (recipe here and it’s even for one person).

There’s no picture of the eggs because I was hungry and started eating before I remembered to take one!





Chopped Israeli Salad for One

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Category: side dish

Cuisine: Middle Eastern

one serving

israeli chopped salad

A versatile salad that works for breakfast, as a side dish with a sandwich, or with pita, feta, and olives for lunch.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 C Persian cucumber (about half a cucumber)
  • 1/3 C tomatoes (I used grape tomatoes, you can use beefsteak)
  • 1 tsp onion, diced
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • salt and pepper
  • sprig of fresh mint (mix a few leaves in the salad, use the rest for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Cut the cucumber and tomatoes into small chunks. The smaller the better. I cut the cucumber in half, then cut the half lengthwise, then gradually smaller dice. Do the tomatoes the same way.
  2. Dice the onion.
  3. Add the vegetables to a small bowl.
  4. Add the olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper and mint.
  5. Toss to mix thoroughly.
  6. You can eat this right away, but it's better to let it sit for an hour or two to let the flavors blend.


Substitutions and Variations for Chopped Israeli Salad

  • Try the full standard Persian version, “salad-e-shirazi,” which is made with seeded cukes and tomatoes, red onion, parsley, mint, salt, pepper, lemon juice (or lime juice) and a bit of olive oil.
  • Make it more filing with some crumbled feta cheese.
  • Add some red bell pepper (or try orange or yellow for more color), cut into tiny pieces
  • Chop some radishes and add them to the salad
  • The Book of Jewish Food has a variation popular with Baghdadi Jews in India: add grated ginger and some chopped chili peppers.

Ingredients and Tools for Chopped Israeli Salad

Oxo Lemon/Lime Reamer

You can squeeze the lime with your hands, but it’s a bit messy.  It’s much easier (and neater) to use a reamer instead. And since it’s made by Oxo, it’s comfortable to use.  Tip: Leave the fruit out to get to room temperature (or zap it in the microwave for 5 seconds). It will juice more easily.

Oxo Salad Chopper (mezzaluna) and bowl

You can use a sharp knife to cut up your salad, but it’s even easier with a salad chopper.  The double blades chop the salad, veggies, cheese, etc into tiny little pieces. And it takes a lot less effort. Just rock your hand back and forth.

More One Person Salad Recipes

Mixed Greens Egg Potato and Chicken Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

Blueberry Spinach Salad with Feta Cheese and Walnuts

Cottage Cheese Yogurt and Fruit Salad

Chicken Salad Recipe with Greek Yogurt and Dried Currants




Watermelon Slush

When it’s just too darn hot outside, a big slice of watermelon really hits the spot. The trouble is, you often end up with watermelon juice all over yourself (your face, your clothes, everywhere).

This watermelon slush solves the drippy watermelon problem.  It’s sort of like a smoothie (and technically called a licuado), but without yogurt.

I could just drink these all day. It’s cool, refreshing, and really easy to make.

There’s just a few ingredients: watermelon, ice cubes, and lime. And, if you like, you get the added attraction of making it into an adult beverage with a shot of rum or vodka.

The original recipe called for a bit of sugar, but I found it was sweet enough without it.  This way you get more watermelon flavor.

Ahhhhh.



Watermelon Lime Smoothie

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Category: beverage

Cuisine: American

one serving

watermelon smoothie/slush

This watermelon slush is cool, refreshing and super-easy to make. Serve it with (or without) alcohol.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup seedless watermelon, cut into chunks
  • 1 cup ice (about 8 cubes)
  • 2 ounces rum or vodka (optional)
  • 1 slice lime

Instructions

  1. Add the watermelon, ice, and rum (if using) to the beaker of a stick blender. Mix thoroughly until ice is crushed and watermelon is puréed.
  2. Pour into a tall glass and squeeze the lime into the drink. Then garnish the glass with the lime. Add a sprig of mint if you like.

Substitutions and Variations for Watermelon Slush

  • make half and half mango and watermelon
  • add a sprig of fresh mint (or basil)
  • swap some of the watermelon for strawberries
  • add half a banana




More Smoothies/Slushies and Cocktails

Banana Smoothie Recipe for One

Strawberry Basil Mojito with Lime

Tools and Ingredients to Make a Watermelon Slush


Cuisinart Smart Stick Hand Blender

This hand blender is the best! Use it to make smoothies, puree soup, salad dressing, milkshakes, applesauce, or dips. Just stick the blender in the pot or bowl, push the button, and blend.  Unlike my last blender, this one has a detachable attachment.  Just remove it to clean (without worrying about damaging the motor).