A favorite chicken dish of mine is peri-peri chicken. I often go to Nando’s to enjoy this famous Portuguese recipe. The marinade for peri-peri, also called piri-piri or pili-pili, is traditionally made from African bird’s eye chili also known by the same name. One trivia I learned is that “pili” means pepper in Swahili – so pili-pili is literally “pepper, pepper”.
I want to replicate the peri-peri I eat at Nando’s – and the one I made is for the mild version (I’m not too keen on very spicy dishes.) However, this recipe can be “spiced up” according to taste. I added the basic ingredients in my first attempt but you can add other herbs like tarragon, basil and oregano.
For a perfect pairing, serve this meal with Spanish Rice.
- 2 fresh limes, squeezed and pulp included
- 1/2 lemon, squeezed
- 1 tbsp salt
- 2-3 pcs bird’s eye chili / thai chili, sliced (adjust for more heat)
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp vinegar
- 1 tbsp coriander powder
- 2 tsp paprika powder (or use cayenne if you want it more spicy)
- 1 tbsp crushed garlic
- 1 lb chicken thighs
- Blend well lime juice, lemon juice, salt, chili, vegetable oil, vinegar, coriander powder, paprika and garlic in a bowl until the texture is consistent.
- Coat the chicken with the marinade. Marinate for at least one hour to 1 day. Save the remaining marinade for dipping sauce.
- Preheat the oven to 175 C or 350 F. Bake the chicken for 25-30 minutes. This will brown the chicken but will not cook it.
- Set grill on medium high heat. Grill the chicken for 10-15 minutes. Baste the chicken with marinade while it cooks.
- Serve your chicken in a plate with the dipping sauce.