Jollof-Spiced Chicken with Baked Plantains

April  6, 2018
4 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Prep time 10 minutes
  • Cook time 35 minutes
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

This is one of those quick and easy dishes that you can throw together in minutes and just let the spices and your oven do the work for you. When cooking with plantains, it’s important that you choose fruit that is fully ripe. Only cook with ones that are deep yellow all over with not even the tiniest hint of green and if they are starting to be dotted with black then that is even better! Serve with some cooked greens or a green salad on the side.
Yasmin Khan

Test Kitchen Notes

To read more about this Ghanianan dish, see the full article. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • Jollof Spice Mix
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon chile flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Chicken & Plantains:
  • 2 1/2 pounds chicken legs (or a combination of thighs and drumsticks)
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 very ripe plantains
  • Finely chopped cilantro, for garnish
  • Thinly sliced scallion, for garnish
  1. Place all the spices in a small bowl and mix together with 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil, the lemon juice, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.
  2. Using a sharp knife, slash the thigh of each chicken leg diagonally in 2–3 places, cutting almost down to the bone. Place the chicken in a bowl or large plastic food container and then spoon over the spice marinade.
  3. Using your hands, rub the spices into the chicken, getting right into the incisions you made with your knife. You can cook the chicken straight away, but for best results, cover and leave in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 1-2 hours for the flavors to infuse the meat.
  4. Peel the plantains and slice them in diagonal pieces around 1/2-inch thick. Toss them with 1/2 tsp salt and 2 tbsp of oil, and then spread out on a large baking tray.
  5. When you are ready to cook, preheat the oven to 375° F. Place the chicken legs on a roasting tray and transfer them to the oven, along with the plantains. Bake for around 35 minutes or until the juices from the chicken run clear when pierced at their thickest part, and the plantains are soft.
  6. To serve, sprinkle the chicken with the chopped cilantro and a few sprigs sliced scallion and pile the plantains on the side.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • rbnyc
  • Siri Olsen
    Siri Olsen
  • Cynthia villano
    Cynthia villano
  • beejay45
Yasmin Khan is a food and travel writer and the author of the best-selling Persian cookbook The Saffron Tales.

4 Reviews

rbnyc October 13, 2020
I was a bit skeptical of this recipe as I wanted to brown the chicken first and perhaps add a bunch of aromatics before baking. But I went with it, figuring it was a weeknight and faster was better. Glad I did. The chicken was nice and crispy and the plantains, which cooked in the chicken fat and juice was fantastic. Served with fonio and brussels sprouts plus a green salad.
Siri O. December 9, 2018
Great recipe! Just place be ware that cilantro/coriander is an unsafe heavy metal chelator, it has the chemical structure to move mercury around in your body, but not remove it so it could potentially get moved from a benign place to a very sensitive spot causing a lot of problems. This should be a concern for everybody as we all have some degree of heavy metals. To read some peoples experience with cilantro you can google "andy cutler what not to do". Hope this helps someone :)
Cynthia V. April 16, 2018
This is so easy and something different to spice things up!
beejay45 April 15, 2018
That spice mix sounds amazing. And the music. What a great idea for getting people to consider something new.