I’m thrilled to have a guest post from my friend Matt Wendel, a wonderful chef who worked for President and Mrs. Bush both at their home in Texas and at Camp David. Matt is primarily known for his Tex-Mex cooking, but you can see from the recipe below that his skills are certainly not limited to South-of-the-Border cooking. This is a perfect midsummer grilling recipe, wherever you’re from!
This grilled marinated chicken is very tasty and easy to make. I cooked it often at the Crawford ranch for the Bushes and their friends, and made it for a luncheon in 2005 when the President hosted President Vicente Fox of Mexico and Prime Minister Paul Martin of Canada. The great thing about this chicken recipe is that it can be served hot as an entree or at room temperature on a salad. The marinade can also be made in advance to make this dish a quick meal.
Easy Summer Chicken by Matt Wendel
Prep time: 20 minutes, plus three hours for chicken to marinate
- 6-8 boneless chicken breasts
For the marinade:
- 2 cups olive oil
- 1 12-ounce can frozen orange juice concentrate
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/3 cup brown spicy mustard
- 3-4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
- 2 teaspoons powdered ginger
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, rough chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, rough chopped
- Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
- Add chicken breasts and marinate for 1-3 hours.
- You may marinate chicken in a zip lock plastic bag for better marinade coverage.
- Make sure to flip over the bag a few times during marinade time.
- For more even cooking, pound down chicken breasts with a mallet to even out the thickness.
- Place chicken on a medium-hot grill (gas or charcoal) and cook for 3-5 minutes on each side, or until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.
- It’s very important to let chicken rest, lightly covered with foil, for 10-15 minutes before serving to allow the juices to soak in.