My family loves chicken enough that they could eat it every night. But, you can only cook it so many ways before it starts to feel like you're eating the same thing over and over again.
All of us are responsible enough to cook without burning down the house, and everyone gets a shot at cooking during the week. But I have to admit, things do get creatively weird when dinnertime rolls around on the weekends when we use the grill.
When it comes to the weird cooking scale, recent events have me placed me ahead of the rest of my family members.
In the summertime I love a tall glass of ice-cold lemonade or raspberry green tea while relaxing on the front porch after an incredible day of memories.
Now everyone thought I was nuts, but after a recent hectic 14-hour day at work, I thought it was a perfectly sane idea that my two favorite drinks might make for some tasty seasonings.
Sick of the grilled chicken dishes that I had already cooked so many times this summer; I thought, "Why not take a package of lemonade or raspberry green tea mix and turn it into the seasonings for grilled chicken."
Needless to say, several of my family members checked my forehead for a fever, but recently they quickly mumbled apologies while eating the chicken.
Using my family as guinea pigs, I made a batch of each flavor of grilled chicken to see which one worked best. I lean more toward liking the flavor of the raspberry chicken, but the lemonade-flavored chicken was pretty good.
I recommend that you try this without telling your family first. It will keep them from checking your forehead!
Put a small package of pre-sweetened lemonade mix (I'm going to try lemon/lime mix the next time I grill out.) in a bowl and stir in six tablespoons of brown sugar, two tablespoons each of salt, ground cumin, chili powder, freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder and one tablespoon of cayenne pepper. (I recommend a little more garlic than the recipe calls for, but please understand I'm still playing mad scientist with it.)
Rub the chicken with the mix and let it set overnight in the refrigerator in a covered container or gallon size Ziploc plastic bags before cooking. Don't worry, it will turn a bright yellow color during the marinade process, but it cooks away.
You will be able to see if the juices in the chicken are clear or pink during the cooking process.
To make the (pre-sweetened) raspberry green tea mix rub, add the package into a bowl and stir in three tablespoons each of garlic powder, Italian seasoning, ground cumin, freshly ground black pepper and one tablespoon each of cayenne pepper and salt.
Rub the chicken with the mix and let it set overnight in the refrigerator in a covered container or Ziploc plastic bags before cooking.
This chicken will turn a really dark red/pink after marinating and will stay pink during cooking, so please use a thermometer to check for the proper temperature while cooking. HEALTH ALERT: Cooking times for chicken pieces differ according to size, but always be sure the internal temperature of each piece is 165 degrees to ensure the safety of your family and guests.