Grilled Curry Chicken with Watercress, Grapes, Peaches, and Orange-red Wine Vinaigrette

As you cook the curry-coated chicken in this dish, the marvelous aroma that rises up from the grill will give you a clear idea of how the heat brings out the flavor of spices. It’s important to use a good curry powder here, since the lesser ones can have a chalky quality. To balance the spiciness of the curry, we add sweet grapes and peaches along with pleasantly bitter watercress for an exciting flavor trifecta.

Recipe courtesy of "Grill It!" by Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughby, copyright 2008. Used by permission of DK Publishing. All rights reserved.

Grilled Curry Chicken with Watercress, Grapes, Peaches, and Orange-red Wine Vinaigrette

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    2 boneless, skinless split chicken breasts (cutlets), about 8 oz(225 g) each 2 ripe but firm peaches, pitted and sliced into 8 sections
    2 tablespoons olive oil 1 cup orange juice
    1 tablespoon good-quality curry powder 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
    Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
    2 bunches watercress, trimmed, washed, and dried well 2 Tbsp. chopped parsley
    20 green grapes, stemmed, halved, and deseeded


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    • 1

      Make the dressing: On the stove top, bring the orange juice to a boil in a small pan over high heat, then lower the heat slightly and simmer until reduced in volume to 1/4 cup (about 20 minutes). Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Add the oil, wine vinegar, parsley, salt, and pepper, whisk together, and set aside.

    • 2

      Build a fire in your grill. When the coals are all ignited, the flames have died down, and the temperature is medium, you’re ready to cook.

    • 3

      Coat the chicken breasts with oil, rub them all over with the curry powder, and sprinkle them generously with salt and pepper. Place them on the grill directly over the coals and cook until they are browned on the outside and just cooked through (6–8 minutes per side). To check for doneness, poke the chicken with your finger to test its firmness; if you’re unsure, make a cut in the thickest part of one of the breasts and check to be sure that it is opaque all the way through. When the breasts are done, transfer them to a plate and cover them loosely with foil to keep warm.

    • 4

      While the chicken is cooking, combine the watercress, grapes, and peaches in a large bowl. Stir the dressing again, add to the watercress-fruit mixture, and toss well to coat. Divide the salad among four plates.

    • 5

      Slice the chicken on the bias into strips, arrange the strips on top of each salad, and serve.

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