Description: This is really a deep dive into proper, old-school Grenadian cuisine. Craig’s father is from Grenada, and after doing some serious digging, I found this recipe, which is exactly the kind of thing that his late grandmother would have been rustling up for the family. This chicken takes time, but that’s kind of the point. It’s a process that is a bit of a labour of love, but the results are truly delicious. Make this for people you love.

Ingredients: 1 x 1.4 kg whole free-range chicken cut into sauté pieces (ask your butcher)

Rice & peas

  • 200 g dried kidney beans
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 8 pimento (allspice) seeds
  • 100 g creamed coconut from a block
  • 1 green Scotch bonnet
  • ½ a bunch of fresh thyme (15g)
  • 3 spring onions
  • 200 g long grain rice


  • 1 onion
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 5 cm piece of ginger
  • 1-2 Scotch bonnets
  • 6 pimento (allspice) seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 whole nutmeg for grating
  • 1 organic chicken stock cube


  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 4 tablespoons tomato ketchup
  • ½ a bunch of fresh thyme (15g)


  • 1.2 kg pumpkin
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • olive oil


  • ½ a cucumber
  • 1 Scotch bonnet
  • 2 fresh bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Instructions: For the rice and peas, soak the kidney beans in 1 litre of water overnight. For the marinade, peel and grate the onion, garlic and ginger, then finely slice the Scotch bonnets. Bash the pimento seeds in a pestle and mortar until fine, then add the ground cloves, a good pinch of black pepper and a few scrapings of nutmeg. Muddle in the grated mixture, stock cube and Scotch bonnets. Spoon the marinade over the chicken, rub all over, then cover and leave in the fridge to marinate for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4.

For the rice and peas, peel and smash the garlic, then place in a pan with the pimento seeds, coconut cream and the soaked beans (soaking water and all). Place over a medium-low heat and cook with the lid on for 1 hour, or until just tender.

Place the chicken in a snug-fitting roasting tray, then roast for 40 minutes. Meanwhile, mix all the sauce ingredients, except for the thyme, together. When the time’s up, reduce the oven temperature to 150ºC/300ºF/gas 2, pour the sauce over the chicken, using the thyme to brush it all over, then roast for a further 35 minutes, or until gnarly and cooked through.

Peel and deseed the pumpkin, then chop into 2cm chunks. Peel and finely chop the onions and garlic. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan over a medium-low heat, add the onion, garlic and pumpkin, followed by a few scrapings of nutmeg, then simmer with the lid on for 40 to 45 minutes, or until starting to caramelise, adding splashes of water, if needed. Smash half the pumpkin with a fork, then stir back through and season to taste with sea salt and white pepper.

When the kidney beans are tender, add the whole scotch bonnet, strip in the thyme leaves, halve the spring onions lengthways, then add followed by the rice. Mix well, just cover with water, pop the lid on and cook on a medium-high heat for 25 minutes, or until the rice is cooked.

For the salsa, scratch a fork down the cucumber skin, then randomly chop. Finely slice the Scotch bonnet (deseed if you like) and scrunch in the bay leaves. Stir through the vinegar, then season to taste and leave for 20 minutes to lightly pickle.

Serve the rice and peas with the chicken, pumpkin and salsa. Finely grate over a little extra nutmeg before serving.

Notes:4 servings