Cachaça grilled chicken

Cachaça grilled chicken

Cabana The Cookbook
Martin Poole

On a trip to Rio, David’s old friend Miguel took us to his favourite galetaria (chicken shop), Sat’s Galeto, and introduced us to a dish we instantly knew we wanted to include: chicken breast, flattened and butterflied, marinated in cachaça and oregano and lightly grilled. It’s an original and crowd-pleasing addition to the barbecue.


Quantity Ingredient
500g boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 garlic cloves, finely crushed
4 tablespoons cachaca
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
few sprigs flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
lime wedges, to serve (optional)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
or 1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped


  1. Open out the chicken thighs and place them on a chopping board. Cover them with clingfilm and lightly bash them with a meat mallet or rolling pin until the meat is of even thickness. Place in a shallow dish and add the garlic, oregano, cachaça, olive oil, salt and pepper. Use your hands to toss and coat the chicken, working the marinade into the flesh. Cover with clingfilm and chill for at least 4 hours.
  2. Remove the chicken from the fridge half an hour before you start cooking and let it come to room temperature. Light the barbecue and let the flames die down before starting to cook. If cooking indoors, heat a griddle pan until hot. If you like, thread the chicken on to metal skewers, which will make it easier to turn them on the barbecue. Cook on the griddle or barbecue for 3–5 minutes on each side, until just cooked through – the chicken should feel firm when lightly pressed. Leave to rest for 5 minutes before serving with a sprinkling of chopped parsley and lime wedges on the side. We like to serve it with grilled portobello mushrooms with halloumi and Bahian-spiced aubergine.
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