You might have had jerk chicken before but have you tried jerk onions? My latest experiment was to use jerk spices and flavours with cooked onions, which I then used as a flavoursome condiment with simple beef burger patties. Super fun and tasty tasty interpretation of the classic Caribbean favourite. Paired with a quick and easy cucumber, avocado and green bean salad, this was another winning paleo dinner. Under 30 minutes!
If you want more complete paleo meals, check out my recipe for Beetroot & Pumpkin Salad with Oregano Garlic Chicken from last week. It got lots of thumbs up from my followers. You can also check out my book Happy Go Paleo which is all about complete meals.
What is jerk all about?
Jerk is a style of cooking from Jamaica in which meat is marinated with a spicy, tasty mixture called Jamaican jerk spice. Jerk seasoning is traditionally used with chicken or pork, and is made up of allspice, chilli, cinnamon, green onion, nutmeg, thyme, garlic, brown sugar, ginger and salt. There are many variations of jerk spice mixes and mine is probably a combination of what should be in it and what I actually had on hand. It’s certainly not 100% authentic but it’s 100% awesome and delicious.
- You can get allspice powder in most supermarkets but if you can’t find it, use some ground up cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- Omit tomatoes, paprika and chilli if avoiding nightshades.
- The patties can be made with ground up chicken, pork or lamb.
- The jerk onions can also be served with fish and prawns.
- Feel free to serve with a different salad or some greens and sweet potato or plantains if you want more carbs.
Omit tomatoes, paprika and chilli if avoiding nightshades. The patties can be made with ground up chicken, pork or lamb. The jerk onions can also be served with fish and prawns. Feel free to serve with a different salad or some greens and sweet potato or plantains if you want more carbs.
For jerk onions
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 medium onions, halved and sliced
- generous pinch of sea salt
- 1/2 long red chilli, diced finely (or 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes or powder)
- 2 large cloves garlic, diced finely
- 1 teaspoon allspice powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or thyme leaves
- pinch of nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons honey, maple syrup or coconut sugar
- 1 tablespoon tamari sauce or coconut aminos
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 2–3 tablespoons water
For the beef patties
- 400–500 g / 1 lb grass fed beef mince
- 1 large clove of garlic, finely grated or diced
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- generous pinch fo pepper
- 2/3 teaspoon sea salt
- dollop of coconut oil for cooking
For the salad
- 100 g string green beans, tails chopped off
- 1/2 long cucumber, diced
- 1/2 large avocado, diced
- 4–5 cherry tomatoes, halved (optional)
- handful of fresh coriander leaves (cilantro)
- 1/3 teaspoon ground cumin
- generous pinch salt and black pepper
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1–2 tablespoons olive oil
- Onions: Heat coconut and olive over medium heat in a medium pan. Add the onions, chilli and salt and sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring a few times.
- Beef burgers: In a bowl, mix together the beef mince, grated garlic, spices, salt and pepper. Use you hands to work through the meat to make sure the flavours are well incorporated. Make 6 small or 4 larger patties, flatten them and set aside. Heat a dollop of coconut oil in a large skillet and add the patties. Cook for 4 minutes each side, then remove to a plate and set aside.
- Bring a small saucepan of water to boil.
- Back to onions: Once the onions have softened up and turned golden brown, add the rest of ingredients and stir through. Cook for another minute or two, stirring frequently. Then set aside.
- Make the salad: Add the green beans to boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Then strain and rinse under cold water until cool. Dice up (I cut each in three parts) and add to a bowl with cucumber, avocado and tomatoes. Add a little sea salt, pepper, lime juice, coriander seed powder and olive oil and combine.
- Serve the patties topped with the jerk onions and the salad on the side.