Dinner tonight: jerk turkey breast with ginger barbecue sauce

June 30, 2015

Store-bought barbecue sauces are a great ­convenience to have around. But because they have such a distinctive taste, they work well only in certain dishes. Adding ginger ale to the sauce creates the perfect sauce for Jamaican jerk turkey.

Dinner tonight: jerk turkey breast with ginger barbecue sauce

Prep time 20 min plus 4 hrs marinating

Cook time 1 hr 40 min

Serves 6

  • 5 green onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and deveined (wear gloves when handling)
  • 1 piece (1 cm/1/2 in) fresh ginger, peeled
  • 50 ml (1/4 c) canola oil
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) soy sauce
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) allspice
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) dried thyme
  • 1 bone-in turkey breast (2.5 to 3 kg/5 to 6 lbs)
  • 7 ml (1 1/2 tsp) salt
  • 250 ml (1 c) ginger ale
  • 250 ml (1 c) prepared barbecue sauce
  1. In a blender, combine the green onions, garlic, onion, jalapeños, ginger, oil, soy sauce, allspice and thyme. Blend until a thick paste forms, then transfer to a large bowl.
  2. With the tip of a sharp knife make several slits all over the turkey breast. Add the turkey to the green onion mixture, turning to coat the breast. Refrigerate for at least four hours, or overnight, turning occasionally.
  3. Preheat a gas grill on high until the thermometer reaches the maximum temperature. Turn off one of the burners and reduce the heat on the other burner(s) to medium. Remove the turkey from the marinade and sprinkle with the salt. On a lightly oiled grill rack, grill the turkey breast, skin side down, over the unlit burner, using indirect heat, turning every 20 minutes until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 71°C (160°F), about one hour 40 minutes. Remove to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
  4. Meanwhile, combine the ginger ale and barbecue sauce in a small pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until thickened and reduced to about 400 millilitres (1 3/4 cups), 18 to 20 minutes.

One more notch!

Traditionally jerk is made using habañero or scotch bonnet peppers, two of the hottest peppers in the world.

  • To kick the spice on this marinade to intensely hot, substitute one habañero or scotch bonnet for the jalapeño peppers.
  • Make sure you handle the peppers while wearing rubber gloves, being careful to not touch your eyes, nose or mouth.


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