A wonderful ingredient common in Andean cooking is ají amarillo paste, made from yellow chiles. Happily, it’s readily available online and at Latin American markets—you’ll find yourself reaching for it for many marinades and sauces. If desired, the chicken can be spit-roasted on a rotisserie or roasted in an oven.
For the chicken and brine:
- 1 whole chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds)
- 2 quarts cold water
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- Extra virgin olive oil, for basting
For the creamy green sauce:
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped 2 scallions, trimmed, white and green parts coarsely chopped
- 2 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and coarsely chopped
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves 3/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon ají amarillo paste (see above)
- 4 fresh mint leaves
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Remove and discard the fat just inside the neck and body cavities of the chicken as well as the giblets (discard or set aside for another use).
In a large deep mixing bowl or stockpot, stir the salt and water until the salt is dissolved. Submerge the chicken in the brine. Cover and refrigerate for 6 to 8 hours.
Drain the chicken, rinse under cold running water, and pat dry with paper towels. Place the chicken on a rimmed baking sheet. Fold the wing tips behind the back and tie the legs together with butcher’s string. Brush the chicken with olive oil.
Set up the grill for indirect grilling, place a drip pan in the center, and heat the grill to medium-high. When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Place the chicken in the center of the grate over the drip pan and away from the heat and cover the grill. Make the green sauce while the bird cooks: In a blender jar or the bowl of a food processor, combine all the sauce ingredients and process until smooth. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if needed.
Grill the bird until the skin is golden brown and crisp and the meat is cooked through, 1 to 1 1/4 hours, basting occasionally with olive oil. Use an instant-read meat thermometer to test for doneness; the internal temperature in the thickest part of the thigh should be 165°F. Carefully remove the bird from the grill and let it rest, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Serve with the sauce.
Serves 2 to 4
Though simple, this is a stunning dessert. Serve, if desired, with vanilla ice cream or sweetened whipped cream. Pisco is a South American brandy available in well-stocked liquor stores.
- 1 cup turbinado sugar (also called Sugar in the Raw)
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- One ripe pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 3/4-inch rings
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons pisco or other brandy
- Mint leaves, for garnish
Place the sugar in a shallow bowl and whisk in the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves.
Whisk together the olive oil and brandy in a small bowl or cup. Brush each slice of pineapple with the olive oil and brandy mixture and dredge in the spiced sugar. Shake off any excess sugar.
Set up a grill for direct grilling and heat to medium-high. (Alternatively, use a grill pan or cast iron skillet.) Grill the pineapple rings for 2 minutes per side, or until they begin to brown. Serve warm, garnished with mint leaves.
This cake is delicious as an afternoon treat or with a scoop of coffee or vanilla (or both!) ice cream for dessert.
- 2 cups all-purpose or pastry flour
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder, sifted to remove lumps
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon instant espresso powder
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 extra-large eggs
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly coat a 9 x 5 loaf pan with olive oil and use a piece of parchment paper to line the bottom and long sides. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, espresso powder, and salt. In a second, larger bowl, whisk the sugar and eggs until well blended and then whisk in the yogurt, followed by the olive oil, milk, and vanilla. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture, folding with a spatula as you go, until incorporated. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and use a thin offset spatula to spread it into the corners of the pan and smooth the top (the batter is thick).
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, depending on your oven—it’s done when the point of a dinner knife inserted in the center comes out almost clean. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then lift out the loaf using the sides of the parchment paper. Let finish cooling on a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Every Chilean household seems to have its own recipe for pebre, a table sauce that complements everything from eggs to grilled meats and seafood. Originally from the Spanish province of Catalonia, it is especially good when fresh tomatoes are in season.
- 4 red snapper, each about 1 pound, scaled, cleaned, and gutted
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of a lime
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
For the pebre:
- 4 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely diced
- 1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely diced
- 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro or flat-leaf parsley
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons merkén or 1 1/2 teaspoons pimentón (Spanish smoked paprika)
- Coarse salt (kosher or sea), to taste
Rinse the fish inside and out under cold running water and pat dry. Rub them (inside and out) with a mixture of 3 tablespoons olive oil, the lime juice, and salt.
Heat the oven to 400°F. Oil a baking dish or rimmed baking sheet large enough to hold the fish in a single layer. Drizzle the top of the fish with olive oil. Bake until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily, about 25 minutes.
While the fish roasts, make the sauce: Combine all the sauce ingredients in a bowl. Taste, adding salt if needed. If tightly covered, the pebre will keep for a day or two in the refrigerator, but it is best when freshly made.
Transfer the fish to a platter or plates and serve with the pebre.