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Jan 23, 2018
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By the Book: Michael Symon’s Grilled Chicken Thighs with Peaches, Mint and Almonds

July 30th 03:07pm, 2013



I am a devout carnivore. Some of my fondest memories involve the sweet sizzle as a thick hunk of meat hits a hot grill. I will put up a fight for the crispy skin or burnt ends — or worse, steal them before anyone notices. My stomach growls at the smell of charcoal, even if I just ate.

Chef and TV personality Michael Symon gets me. He released his homage to all things meat in Michael Symon’s Carnivore: 120 Recipes for Meat Lovers. But there’s more to this cookbook than steaks and chicken breasts. Each protein receives its own chapter, and while the traditional American beef, chicken and pork recipes get their due, he also encourages trying more daunting fare. If you ever had the desire to braise lamb necks, make duck pastrami or tackle head cheese, Symon has you covered. Beyond recipes, he explains how to purchase meat and what all the verbage cluttering meat labels (Prime versus Choice, grass-fed versus grain-fed) actually means.




Symon’s Grilled Chicken Thighs with Peaches, Mint and Almonds is inexpensive, fresh and guaranteed to fill up a crowd. Skin-on thighs marinade in smoked paprika and toasted coriander. Symon recommends searing them off with a little olive oil over direct heat for two minutes; I had to tame the coals with a water bottle, and the thighs still crisped up in just one minute. My advice: skip the oil and let the chicken fat do the work.




While the chicken cooked, I sliced up juicy summer peaches (while trying not to devour them, a true test of willpower) and tossed them with peppery arugula, bright mint and lime. Be sure to top the chicken with the salad as soon as it flies off the grill; the arugula wilts a bit and the peaches warm just slightly. I served this heaping platter of summer at the table with warm biscuits and let everyone help themselves.





Michael Symon’s Grilled Chicken Thighs with Peaches, Mint and Almonds
10 Servings

1 Tbsp. coriander seeds, toasted and ground (I used ground coriander.)
1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
Kosher salt for seasoning
10 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
½ cup red onion, thinly sliced
6 peaches, pitted and each cut into 8 pieces
1 jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, minced
Grated zest and juice of 2 limes
2 cups arugula
1 cup thinly sliced fresh mint
1/2 cup Marcona almonds, chopped

• Combine the coriander, paprika and 1 tablespoon of salt in a large zip-top bag. Add the chicken thighs, turn to coat on all sides and refrigerate overnight.
• Allow the chicken to come to room temperature 30 minutes before cooking. Pat the chicken dry.
• Heat a charcoal or gas grill so that one side is medium-high and the other very low.
• Brush the chicken thighs with a little olive oil and put them skin-side-down on the hot side of the grill. Cover the grill. After 2 minutes, remove the lid, flip the chicken, and put it on the cooler side of the grill. Put the lid back on and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, until the chicken hits an internal temperature of 160 degrees.
• Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the onion, peaches and jalapeño. In a separate bowl, whisk together the lime zest and juice, ¼ cup olive oil and a good pinch of salt. Pour the dressing over the peaches and gently toss to combine. Add the arugula, mint and almonds and toss once or twice.
• To serve, put the chicken thighs on a large platter. Top with the peach mixture and serve immediately.

Reprinted with permission from Clarkson Potter Publishers

What is your go-to meat to grill in the summer? Let us know in the comments below for a chance to win a copy of Carnivore by Michael Symon. We’ll announce the winner in next week’s By the Book column.

And now, we’d like to congratulate Yasmin, whose comment on last week’s By the Book has won her a copy of Home Made Summer by Yvette Van Boven. Yasmin, keep an eye out for an email from the Sauce crew.



By Catherine Klene

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17 Responses to “By the Book: Michael Symon’s Grilled Chicken Thighs with Peaches, Mint and Almonds”

  1. Ben King Says:
    July 30th, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    I am a big fan of chicken as well. Although I like to make drumsticks and baste them in my own made up sauce. The sauce is real easy. Take a bottle of Tiger Sauce, a bottle of Picka-Pepper Sauce, a half a stick of butter and two TBSP of honey, add them all to a sauce pan and heat until the butter is melted. Stir it all together and baste your chicken legs with it while on the grill. I love it!!!

  2. Joe Says:
    July 31st, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    Any and all thing pork!

  3. Earen Hummel Says:
    August 4th, 2013 at 9:02 am

    Definitely chicken. In a marinade of soy sauce, cider vinegar, lots of garlic and chopped onions.

  4. Jane Gram Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:13 am

    Boring old chicken breasts are the go-to grill meat in our home. Our kids love it, and we grill enough on Sunday to last a few days. Makes for great leftovers!

  5. Bubba Durand Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:16 am

    Grilled Triple-Meat Meatloaf with Sriracha Glaze!
    Make this meatloaf: http://www.johnsoncookbook.com/triple-meatloaf.htm, shape it into a free-form loaf, cook it over indirect heat in a charcoal kettle grill. Glaze with this glaze: http://www.johnsoncookbook.com/sriracha_glaze_for_meatloaf.htm during the last 30 minutes.

  6. Anne LeMaitre Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:17 am

    Country style ribs rubbed and cooked low and slow in the smoker, then served with sweet smoky sauce. Served with stroller salad and I’m in heaven.

  7. Dixie Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:19 am

    I always go to pork tenderloins for my go-to meat for grilling! There are so many different marinades and flavors to add that you never get bored!

  8. Amy Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Chicken is our choice of meat/poultry. So many ways to change it up with different marinades, spices, and smoke.

  9. Luke Johnson Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:32 am

    Brautwurst. So easy and so delicious.

  10. Troy Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:51 am

    Smoked pork belly and brisket sandwiches all summer long. Love my smoker

  11. Karen Diederichsen Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:53 am

    My go to is always pork tenderloin. Love it grilled any way.

  12. Hao Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 10:55 am

    veggies! and chicken. OMG rosemary garlic chicken. XD

  13. Karla C Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 11:05 am

    My go to meat is PORK! I’ve learned over the years how to cook it perfectly so it is tender and juicy. My father taught me the perfect seasoning combination and his secret technique for both chops and St. Louis pork steaks. My kids ask for them all the time. So good!

  14. Kim C Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Pork Tenderloin can be anything you want it to be based on the marinade. Always a great choice for the grill!

  15. Cindy R Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 11:11 am

    I love a chile rubbed pork tenderloin. I usually do a mix of chile powders (regular, chipotle, ancho), granulated garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. I vary the seasoning depending on the group I’m cooking for…some like it spicier (heavier on the chipotle). Then I pair it with a pineapple salsa. Combine fresh grilled pineapple (the grilling caramelizes the sugars in the fruit and really sweetens it up), fresh diced jalapeno, red pepper, red onion. Squeeze some lime over it and sprinkle a little cilantro on top. I often set aside some salsa without the cilantro for those who really dislike cilantro. A great side for this is Mexican street corn. It is quite a hit with my friends and family.

  16. Nancy Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    My meat go to is Steak!! And of course grilled veggies!!!

  17. SwissSannetje Says:
    August 5th, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    Any kind of chicken (plus some veggies on the side)!!

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