Jerk Chicken with Rice & Peas
Difficulty level: Medium
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This recipe is close to my heart and goes down 3 generations. It is a traditional Jamaican recipe that is inspired by my Auntie Cherry who grew up in Jamaica and who influenced my dad to cook this special meal. I'm pleased to have learned to make it too! 

I've also included a recipe for Jamaican fried dumplings which my dad used to make often. They're crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, and I always like to make then whenever I am having a Caribbean meal.

This recipe might take a bit of time and organisation. Read the full recipe first then take it step by step. You’ll be amazed by the results and so will your friends and family!

Prep Time
20-25 minutes
Cooking/Baking Time
30-45 minutes

 For the jerk chicken

1 whole chicken, cut up into legs, thighs, breasts and wings

3 stalks green onions, chopped

2 garlic cloves, chopped

1 tbsp. ground allspice

1 tbsp. dried thyme

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

½ tsp. ground black pepper

1 ½ tsp. salt

1 tsp. ground nutmeg

2 tbsp. dark brown sugar

1 tsp. malt vinegar

3 fl. oz. vegetable oil

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, chopped

1 shallot, chopped

Half a scotch bonnet pepper (or non if you would prefer it mild)

For the rice and peas

1 14-oz can of coconut milk (keep the can to measure the rice!)

14 fl. oz. hot water

½ tsp. ground allspice

½ tsp. salt

1 tsp. dried thyme

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 can-full long grain rice

1 can kidney beans

For the fried dumplings

10 oz. self-raising flour

2 slightly raised tbsp. corn flour 

1 tbsp. demerara sugar

1 tsp. salt

5-6 fl. oz. warm water

Vegetable oil for frying

  1. Put the chicken into a roasting tray. In a food processor or blender, put in all the marinade ingredients and purée until it forms a smooth paste. Add a tablespoon of hot water at a time if necessary to help the ingredients to combine better. Fully coat the chicken with the marinade. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes. You can also marinate the chicken overnight in the fridge but remember to bring it back to room temperature before cooking.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180º Celsius.
  3. In the meantime, make the dumplings by combining all the ingredients until you have a very soft dough. Knead for 5 minutes then divide the dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll the dough into balls and place on a greased baking tray. Brush the dough balls with oil, cover with clingfilm and set aside until ready to cook.
  4. For the rice and peas, place a large pot over a medium heat. Mix in the coconut milk, half the water, allspice, salt, thyme and garlic. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Add the rice cover and cook for about 15 minutes. Add more water if necessary until the rice is cooked thoroughly.
  5. Get ready to start multi-tasking (I recommend a couple of kitchen timers)! While the rice is cooking, put the chicken in the oven to cook for 35-40 minutes. Next, in a large frying pan, add the oil until it reaches 1 inch. Place on a medium heat. When the oil comes to temperature, place the dumplings on top and cook each side for 15 minutes. They should have a beautiful golden colour. Once the dumplings are fully cooked, remove from the oil and drain on kitchen paper.
  6. Bring your attention back to the rice which should be halfway cooked after 15 minutes. At this point add the whole can of kidney beans and stir in well. Continue to cook with the lid off for a further 15-20 minutes or until the moisture has evaporated. If you feel the rice is still crunchy, add a little bit more water at a time for the rice to absorb. Once cooked, cover and set aside.
  7. Remove the cooked jerk chicken from the oven. To give the chicken a more charred flavour/colour, place a shallow frying pan on a high heat and cook the chicken pieces quickly on each side for about 1 minute.
  8. Serve up and enjoy!

Your Photos

I'd love to see how you've made it! Tag me on Instagram @neyskitchen.official  with #neyskitchenofficial or contact me to submit your photos.

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