It’s Grilling Season!

This was the sky when I was making dinner Sunday night. Pretty incredible, yes?

This was the sky when I was making dinner Sunday night. Pretty incredible, yes?

I don’t know if you’ve been having the late spring heat wave like we had last week, but when it gets to be stifling humid weather, the last thing I want to do is be in front of a hot stove. Dishes get made or at least prepped in the early morning when it’s a little cooler or dinner is just a few simple cold salads. But of course, grilling outdoors is the best way to make dinner in the summer!

We finally got rid of the grill we had for years two summers ago and spent all last summer grill-less. But that’s not going to be the case this year; it won’t be long before we’ll be cooking in the outdoors again! In the meantime, this recipe, a rub plus a glaze for chicken, is terrific even if you cook your meat in the oven!

This recipe, originally from the July 2012 issue of Cooking Light, has you grill this over hickory chips. (You can see the original recipe here.) I’ve tweaked the recipe just a little, but the basic original recipe is still there. For me, this is a weekend dinner; it always seems to take a while to make it, but it’s definitely well worth the extra effort!

DSCN0285

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Ancho-Tequila Glaze
Inspired by the July 2012 Cooking Light recipe

The original recipe is for 12 bone-in skinless chicken thighs, and I’ve made this with both thighs and chicken legs and both ways it’s delicious. Also, if you don’t have a full bottle of tequila in your liquor cabinet, just buy a miniature bottle; that should  roughly be three tablespoons worth.

The Rub
1 tablespoons ancho chili powder (I use regular chili powder)
1 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
2-3 finely minced garlic cloves
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
Lots of freshly ground black pepper (1 ½ teaspoons)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
12 bone-in chicken thighs, skinned (about 2 1/2 pounds)
1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

The Glaze
6 tablespoons amber agave syrup
3 tablespoons tequila
1 ½ tablespoons hot sauce
1 tablespoon butter
The juice of ½ lime
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper (less if you don’t want the heat)

1. In a large bowl, mix together the ingredients for the rub except the olive oil. Add the chicken, toss to coat, and add the oil, and mix again. From here, you can pop in the fridge if you’re doing other things, or set aside until the glaze is finished.

2. For the glaze, mix together the ingredients and bring it to a boil, stirring occasionally until it is reduced and thick.

3. Place the chicken either on a greased grill rack or a baking pan and brush some glaze to each piece of chicken. Continue to brush each piece of chicken with a bit of glaze every so often until the meat is completely cooked. If you have leftover glaze, you can add a little bit to each piece of chicken before serving.

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