Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken

January 21, 2008 | Chuck
Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken

After last month's declaration that my mom's spicy lemongrass chicken was the dish I would eat for the rest of my life if I had to choose one item, Hungry Bear was a little sad. I had told her previously that her Hawaiian marinated seared chicken was my favorite chicken dish. Doh, how do you choose between your mom's cooking and your girlfriend's? It's a no win situation.

Despite my faux pas, Hungry Bear still made her Hawaiian chicken this past week. We hadn't seen some SNDsters for awhile and had a midweek "Sunday night dinner." We served the chicken over rice with a side of stir-fried vegetables. For dessert, we made a fantastic blueberry kuchen.

The chicken is very flavorful and tender, because it's marinated overnight in a citrus marinade. The marinade is a blend of strong flavors, particularly the Chinese five spice, fresh mint and mustard. I think the best part is the sauce created by deglazing the frying pan with some reserved marinade. The sauce contains all the caramelized bits left in the pan, and it's wonderful on the chicken and rice.

We have prepared the chicken two other ways — pan seared then finished in the oven, and barbecued on the grill. Both methods worked out fine and I really liked grilling the chicken, but Hungry Bear determined the best approach is just to pan fry the chicken thighs until they are done. The benefit is extra caramelized bits for deglazing!

The chicken was absolutely delicious. I just want to state for the record that my mom's spicy lemongrass chicken is my favorite Vietnamese chicken and Hungry Bear's Hawaiian chicken is my favorite non-Vietnamese chicken dish. I hope this latest declaration makes everyone happy and keeps me out of potential trouble.

SNDsters: Howie, Mark, Jane, Hungry Bear, Chuck

Citrus Marinade

Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken Recipe

SND Note: Halved chicken breasts or duck breasts can be used in this recipe by searing the breasts on each side for 3-4 minutes in a oven-proof pan. After searing, bake the beasts covered with foil at 375°F until they are cooked through (170°F internal temp), about 15 minutes.

1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup canola oil plus 1 tablespoon for searing
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon honey 
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped 
2 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder 
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trim excess fat

1) Mix all of the ingredients except the chicken in a large bowl. Reserve 1/4 of marinade, cover and refrigerate. Add the chicken to remaining marinade and turn to coat. Cover bowl and refrigerate overnight.

2) Remove the chicken from marinade and pat dry. Discard marinade. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and brown each side for 6-8 minutes, until thighs are cooked through. Work in batches if necessary.

3) To make the sauce, deglaze the pan with reserved marinade. Scrape up all caramelized bits. Reduce sauce until slightly thick, about 5 minutes. Pour sauce over chicken and serve with jasmine rice.

Makes 4 servings

[Recipe adapted from The New Cuisine of Hawaii cookbook]

[tags]hawaiian, marinated, seared, chicken, five spice, citrus, ginger[/tags]

9 Comments on “Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken”

  1. Judy said:

    That looks really good — better than L&L.

  2. Chuck said:

    Hi Judy! Thanks!

  3. amystu said:

    I saw this pork bun on a posting in time out –
    is this something you are familiar with? If so, do you have a recipe. The pulled pork recipe seems to be popular so thought you might have a version of this pork bun from Momofuku Noodle Bar. Thanks!

  4. Carol in VT said:

    Chuck – this is the second time that your recipes have given me dinner on a special night. Your pudding cake was my Xmas dessert (found you that day; made it that night). Tonight the spicy lemongrass chicken on the night when a family member finally succumbed to peace after a long battle with cancer. It’s WONDERFUL to read your blog!

  5. Chuck said:

    Carol, my condolences to you and your family for your loss. Thanks for the kind words and for reading the blog!

    Amystu, sorry I don’t have a recipe for it. The steamed pork buns look fantastic.

  6. Nicole said:

    Chuck – you have fabulous recipes! I have made a few of them, including this Hawaiian Chicken, and they have all been so great and full of flavor. Your website is a “must read” when I’m looking to try new things in the kitchen!

  7. Scott said:

    I must say… we tried Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken and Spicy Lemon grass Chicken Recipe… I guess we don’t have the pallet to handle these.

    Thanks for your effort!

  8. Adam said:

    Just a nitpick, but it isn’t really a ‘citrus’ marinade since it’s made with pineapple juice.. which isn’t citrus. But I am trying this tonight so wish me luck!


  1. valentine’s lunch + the ‘morning after’

    […] I get the itch to try my hand at a random recipe. I found a recipe from a guy’s food blog for Hawaiian Marinated Seared Chicken a couple weeks ago and I couldn’t pass it up (and luckily I didn’t mess it up!) The […]

Leave a Comment

Comment Guidelines:
Email addresses are never published. Comments are editable for 15 minutes after submission. Basic HTML can be used, e.g. <strong> <i> <em> <strike> etc. Gravators (globally recognized avatars) are enabled. Sign-up at Gravatar to display your avatar on SND and other sites.