In Texas, the first day of summer comes and goes without much fanfare. Officially, the first day of the season occurs around June 21 and is marked by the summer solstice, or what we in the Northern Hemisphere call “the longest day of the year.”
Of course, by late June it’s likely you’ve already spent a lazy day at the lake, attended a pool party or gathered with friends on a balmy evening. In any case, June is a great month to take the party outdoors and enjoy the weather before the mercury rises mercilessly.
I’m including a personal favorite appetizer recipe from my friend Susan, a member of Fayette EC, who throws amazing summer parties on her ranch.
Bite-sized chunks of chicken are marinated in a mixture of Sriracha hot sauce and lime, sprinkled with brown sugar, baked and put under the broiler.
Susan’s Sriracha Bacon Chicken Bites
4 small boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (6 ounces each or about 1 1/2 pounds total)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons Sriracha sauce
1/2 teaspoon cumin
16 slices bacon
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
- Cut each chicken breast into large, bite-size (about 1-inch) chunks and put them in a 1-gallon zipper bag.
- Stir together oil, lime juice, Sriracha and cumin and pour over the chicken. Let marinate for about an hour.
- Cut each bacon slice into two pieces and drape each piece over and around a chicken cube, securing with a toothpick. Arrange wraps on a flat surface and sprinkle evenly with brown sugar.
- Spray top rack of a broiler pan with high-temperature grilling spray and arrange chicken wraps on top. Adjust the oven rack so that the chicken sits about 6 inches under the broiling element.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 25-28 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
- When chicken is cooked, set oven to broil and broil for about 3 to 6 minutes, watching carefully all the while, until sugar starts to brown and edges of bacon are crisp.
Servings: 16. Serving size: 2 pieces. Per serving: 127 calories, 12 g protein, 5.5 g fat, 5.2 g carbohydrates, trace dietary fiber, 265 mg sodium, 4.9 g sugars, 35 mg cholesterol
- For a lighter version, try turkey bacon.
- For crispier bacon, use precooked bacon.