The Secret to Paul Kahan's Sweet-Spicy Chicken

Grilled Chicken with Spicy-Sweet Chile Oil Photo © Christina Holmes
By Kate Krader Posted September 08, 2014

The grilled chicken at hole-in-the-wall Portuguese spot, Montreal's Chez Doval, inspired this amazing recipe. 

Before Paul Kahan opened his remarkable beer hall Publican in Chicago in 2008, he went on a research trip to Montreal and discovered a hole-in-the-wall Portuguese spot, Chez Doval. The chef was smoking a cigarette as he grilled chicken with the classic chile sauce piri piri. “It was hilarious,” says Kahan, an F&W Best New Chef 1999. “And his chicken was very good. But I knew mine could be even better.” So Kahan took that recipe and tweaked it. He salts the chicken a day ahead, so it’s incredibly juicy, and adds the smoky Basque pepper piment d’Espelette to the tangy sauce instead of paprika. “There are about 900 dishes on Publican’s menu,” says Kahan. “This is one of the few that never comes off.”

Recipe: Grilled Chicken with Spicy-Sweet Chile Oil

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