This week the Professor hits the peninsula where they grill with snap in the sun. Feel the heat with Raichlen's Jalapeno Jerk Baby Back Ribs glazed with Pineapple Barbecue Sauce. The state fruit gets a turn with Florida Tangerine Teriyaki Chicken Breasts and again in Salmon Kebabs Skewered on Sugarcane with Sour Orange Mojo.
1 cup fresh tangerine juice (from 3 to 5 tangerines)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup honey
4 strips tangerine zest (each about 1-1/2 by 1/2 inch)
2 cloves garlic, peeled and gently crushed with the side of a cleaver
2 scallions, trimmed, white parts gently crushed with the side of a cleaver, green parts thinly sliced
2 slices fresh ginger (each 1/4 inch thick), peeled and gently crushed with the side of a cleaver
1 cinnamon stick (2 inches long)
2 to 3 tablespoons Asian (dark) sesame oil
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1. Place the tangerine juice in a nonreactive saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. Let boil until reduced by half. Add the soy sauce, honey, tangerine zest, garlic, scallion whites, ginger, cinnamon stick, and 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil. Let the mixture boil until thick and syrupy, about 5 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
2. Trim any sinew or excess fat off the chicken breasts and discard. Rinse the breasts under cold running water, then drain and blot dry with paper towels. Place the breasts in a nonreactive baking dish.
3. Pour half of the tangerine mixture over the chicken, turning to coat both sides. Set the rest of the tangerine mixture aside; you'll use it as a glaze. Let the chicken marinate for 1 to 2 hours in the refrigerator, covered, turning the breasts once or twice so that they marinate evenly.
4. Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.
5. When ready to cook, drain the marinade from the chicken and discard the marinade. Brush and oil the grill grate. Lightly brush each breast with some of the sesame oil. Arrange the chicken breasts on the hot grate, placing them on a diagonal to the bars. Grill the breasts for 2 minutes, then brush them with more sesame oil and rotate them a quarter turn to create an attractive crosshatch of grill marks. Continue grilling the breasts on that side for 2 minutes longer. Turn the breasts over and grill until cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes longer, again rotating them after 2 minutes. The total cooking time will be 8 to 10 minutes, depending on the thickness of the chicken breasts. To test for doneness, poke a breast in the thickest part with your finger; it should feel firm to the touch. During the last 2 minutes of grilling, using a clean brush, baste the breasts with the reserved glaze.
6. Transfer the grilled chicken breasts to plates or a platter and pour any remaining glaze over them. For a fancier presentation, you can slice the chicken breasts crosswise on the diagonal and fan out the slices. Sprinkle the scallion greens and sesame seeds over the chicken and serve.
Source: How to Grill by Steven Raichlen
Method: direct grilling
Serves: 4 to 6 as an appetizer or 4 as a light main course
1/2 cup olive oil
8 large cloves garlic, thinly sliced crosswise
1 teaspoon ground cumin, or more to taste
1/3 cup fresh squeezed lime juice
1/3 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1-1/2 teaspoons coarse (kosher or sea) salt, or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup fresh cilantro or mint, chopped
1-1/2 pounds skinless salmon fillets or steaks, pin bones removed
2 large sweet onions, cut into 1/2 inch slices, each slice impaled on a bamboo skewer or toothpick
1 large navel orange, peeled, the membrane removed, and sectioned
You'll also need:
1 baton of fresh sugarcane, available at some markets or through www.melissas.com (or bamboo skewers, soaked for 1 hour and drained)
1. Prepare the mojo: Heat the oil in a deep saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cumin and cook until the garlic is fragrant and a pale golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Do not let the garlic brown too much, or it will become bitter. Stir in the lime and orange juices, salt, pepper, and oregano, and 1/3 cup water. (Stand back. The sauce may sputter
when you add the water.) Bring the sauce to a rolling boil. Taste for seasoning, adding salt or cumin as necessary. Let cool to room temperature, then stir in the cilantro.
2. Trim the dry ends off the sugarcane baton and cut into 6-inch sections using a heavy cleaver or sharp chef's knife. Stand one of the sections on end. Cut downward to remove the tough outer skin. Then cut the cane into flat 1/4-inch thick strips. (The lengthwise cuts are much easier than the crosswise cuts because of the fibrous nature of the cane.)
Lay the strips flat on your cutting board, and cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch wide skewers.
Finally, make a sharp diagonal cut on the end of each skewer so the point will pierce the salmon more easily.
3. Cut the salmon into 1-1/2 inch chunks; try to keep them as uniform as possible. Arrange them in one layer in a nonreactive baking dish just large enough to hold them. Pour half the mojo over the salmon and let marinate, covered, in the refrigerator for 1 hour, turning the salmon chunks over so all sides marinate. Refrigerate the remaining mojo to serve as a sauce when the kebabs are cooked.
4. Thread the salmon chunks on the skewers.
5. Set up the grill for direct grilling and preheat to high.
6. When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Remove the salmon kebabs from the baking dish, reserving any remaining marinade. Brush the marinade on the skewered onion slices. Arrange the kebabs and onion slices on the hot grate. Grill, turning with tongs, until the salmon kebabs and the onions are nicely browned and the fish is cooked, 4 to 6 minutes per side, basting with the marinade until the last 3 minutes of cooking time.
7. Transfer the onions to a plate or platter, top with the salmon kebabs, and spoon the reserved mojo over them. (Discard any mojo used as a baste when the kebabs were grilling.) Garnish with the orange sections and serve at once.