Mojo Chicken with Peppers and Chili-Rubbed Sweet Potatoes

Some meals you  take a few bites of and think "Eh, next time I'll _______." You say that, but will there even be a next time? Do mediocre meals get a second chance? Maybe. Not usually, in my kitchen. Either way, it's not an issue, because this was not one of those meals. This was one of those meals you finish and then think, "Man, I could eat that entire thing again."

Mojo sauce is supposed to be Cuban, but to be honest this reminded me nothing of the food in Cuba. I remember eating three things in Cuba: hand held pizza made with some sort of cheese that bordered on cojita and feta, an over-the-top Christmas dinner, and the best chocolate ice cream I've had to date. This dish was different. 

Mojo sauce is tangy and sweat, and mojo sauce cooked with bell peppers, onions and chicken is savory, rich and completely slurp-able. Toss some sweet potatoes with chili-powder and DING! You've got yourself a plateful of dancing flavors. 

I am so glad there are left overs. 


Mojo Chicken with Sweet Peppers and Chili-Rubbed Sweet Potatoes

CHICKEN BRINE:

1 small bone-in chicken half

1/4 cup lemon

1 tablespoon high mineral sea salt

1/2 cup water

dash ground black pepper

MOJO SAUCE:

Juice 1/2 orange

Juice 1 lime

2 cloves garlic

1 tablespoon cumin seeds, whole

1/2 teaspoon high mineral sea salt

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 cup water

ALSO:

1 red onion

2 red bell peppers

1 tablespoon coconut oil

FOR CHILI-RUBBED SWEET POTATOES:

1 large Hannah Sweet Potato

1 tablespoon avocado oil

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon high mineral sea salt

Dash cayenne pepper

FOR SERVING:

Cilantro

Orange Zest

1. You may choose to skip the brining process. Brining adds flavor to the meat, while preventing dryness and making your chicken super juicy. It adds to the recipe but is not completely necessary. If you choose to skip this process, move on to step 2 now. If you do want to brine your meat, put the chicken a into one airtight container along with the lemon juice, salt, water and pepper. If the brine does not cover at least half of your chicken, make more, and add it to the container. Place everything in the fridge for 8-24 hours. Once you are ready to bake the chicken, remove it from the brine and pat the skin dry. 

2. Preheat over to 450°F. In blender, combine Mojo sauce ingredients. Place chicken in a baking dish and pour the sauce over the chicken. 

3. While Chicken marinates, chop onion and peppers. Add to a cast iron skillet over medium heat and sauté in the coconut oil, stirring occasionally. 

4. Chop sweet potatoes into 1-in cubes. Toss in oil, then in spices. Spread out on a sheet pan, and place in oven. Check on potatoes every 15 minutes or so, turning them to ensure even browning. Remove when soft through and crisp on edges, 30-45 minutes

5. Add chicken, skin side up, to the pan with onion and peppers. Pour the remaining marinade over top.  Place in oven and bake until a thermometer reads at least 160°F when inserted into the thickest part of the bird. Cooking time will vary greatly depending on size of bird. Mine cooked in roughly 30 minutes.