Monday, October 11, 2010

Indian Summer, Global Warming and Grilled Currant-Mustard Chicken Thighs


It was a fine weekend in Chicago full of endless blue skies and autumn trees in full plumage. It was also hot, the thermometer hovering near 80 F. With fall duties on my agenda, including planting mums and changing over closets, this spike in temperature was not welcome. Then there's the suggestion from our friendly neighborhood weathermen that these warm days are with us for a little while, about a week they say.

Of course, we've always had Indian summer, a day or two of unseasonable warmth in autumn. But this is more than that and it seems to underline recent assertions by Chicagoans in the know that in 20 years our weather will be more like that of Arkansas. That may sound nice to those of us who've survived a Chicago winter or two, but let's not forget what that means for Arkansas and rest of the southern states of this country, much less that of the southern hemisphere. And still politicians debate about the existence of global warming.

Not wanting to fire up the air conditioner again, we threw open all the doors and windows. For dinner, we lit the fire in our Big Green Egg so as to avoid the oven and served a meal of fall ingredients cooked summer style, including Grill Roasted Butternut Squash Served on Mustard Greens with Goat Brie and Walnuts and Red Currant-Mustard Chicken Thighs.

Red Currant-Mustard Chicken Thighs
Serves 6

1/2 cup red currant jelly
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
6 boneless skinless chicken thighs

Combine the first 4 ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking frequently. Turn the heat to medium and reduce by half to a sticky glaze. Fire up a grill or heat a non-stick grill pan. Brush the glaze all over the chicken thighs and cook until they reach 165 F. This won't take long at all. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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