Crispy Skin Chicken with Red Chile Ginger Sauce and Asian Cabbage Slaw

Serves 4 to 6

Red Chile Ginger Chicken:

1 Tbsp. cooking oil

2 Tbsp. grated ginger

2 green garlic, minced

1 cup minced red bell pepper

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 Tbsp. ancho chile powder

1 Tbsp. coconut palm sugar

3 Tbsp. rice vinegar

¼ cup water

2 dry smoked serrano chile peppers, crushed in a spice grinder

4 airline chicken breast (skin on and wing bone still attached)

Salt and pepper

2 Tbsp. cooking oil

2 cups cabbage slaw (recipe follows)

1. In a sauté pan, heat the cooking oil over medium heat. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally until fragrant. Add the bell pepper and cook until tender, another 3 minutes.

2. Add the tomato paste and chiles and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the sugar, vinegar and water and cook on low heat for 10 minutes, until the sauce has the consistency of thick jam. Add a pinch of salt and remove from the heat. (Note: set 1/3 of the sauce aside to serve with the finished dish so it does not touch raw chicken.)

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

4. Heat a large cast iron skillet on medium heat. Before it gets too hot, add the chicken, skin-side down, leaving about 30 seconds between each piece, so the temperature of the pan does not drop too low. Allow the heat to build in the pan while slowly rendering the fat from the skin. This will ensure the skin gets crispy. Move the pieces around as they sear to keep them from sticking. Cook until the skin is golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes.

5. When golden brown and almost fully crisp, turn over and turn off the direct heat in the pan.

6. Brush the chicken with enough sauce that it falls off the sides a little to fully coat each piece.

7. Transfer the entire skillet to the oven and bake about 20-25 minutes; brushing the chicken with glaze twice while it roasts. When the internal temperature reads 160 degrees with an instant-read thermometer; remove and rest for 5 minutes.

8. Serve with cabbage slaw and additional chile sauce.

Asian Cabbage Slaw:

1 Tbsp. coconut palm sugar

1 ½ Tbsp. rice vinegar

2 Tbsp. lime juice

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 cup cabbage, shredded

2 large carrot, julienned

½ cup snap peas, julienned

1 Thai chile, seeded and minced

1 Tbsp. cilantro leaves, chopped

1 Tbsp. oregano leaves, chopped

  1. Whisk the sugar, vinegar, lime and olive oil together.
  2. Place vegetables and herbs in a large bowl and gently toss with the dressing. Set aside