The Hedgecombers' Tea-Smoked Chicken Thighs

The Hedgecombers' Tea-Smoked Chicken Thighs

 A fun recipe that delivers moist, juicy chicken thighs with a lovely, smoky flavour. Jane simply serves them with rice and pak choi, but they would work equally well with noodles.

Jane Sarchet, also known as The Hedgecombers, is a food writer, photographer and real food recipe creator who uses high quality, natural ingredients from on and around her family farm in Cornwall. Her latest venture is a 6-part TV series for Amazon Prime where she travels around Cornwall in her camper discovering some of the best kept culinary secrets in Britain. This fantastic Asian-inspired chicken recipe was featured on episode 2 of the series, which you can watch here.


Cook until the internal temperature of the chicken thighs reaches 75°C/165F. 

  • 4 Skinless, boneless chicken thighs
For the marinade
  • Zest and juice of 1 orange
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
For the smoking mixture
  • 60g black tea leaves
  • 100g uncooked, dry rice
To serve
  • Cooked basmati rice & pak choi that has been stir fried in a little toasted sesame oil
  • Mix the marinade ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Add the chicken thighs, tossing around to coat each one well. Leave to one side whilst you prepare the smoking mixture, or cover and leave overnight in the fridge.
  • Line a flat, heavy bottomed pan, that has a tight fitting lid, with 2 layers of foil.
  • Preheat the pan to medium high heat.
  • Tip the tea leaves and uncooked rice onto the foil, and mix together before spreading out into an even layer
  • Place a heatproof trivet over the rice. Ensure the trivet is high enough to not touch the smoking mixture.
  • When the tea starts to smoke, place the marinated chicken thighs on the trivet, leaving a little space around each one.
  • Pop the pan lid on and leave on a medium heat, untouched, for 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes, pour half an inch of boiling water into the bottom of the pan and quickly place the lid back on. The steam created will finish cooking the chicken perfectly.
  • Steam for 15 more minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken thighs reaches 75°C/165°F.
  • Remove the chicken with tongs, slice each piece into thick slices and serve with the rice and pak choi.
Products to help you achieve perfection
"My Thermapen is never far away, whether I'm making jams with foraged hedgerow fruits, or ensuring that meats cooked on an open fire are safe and perfectly cooked."
Jane Sarchet
Writer of Recipes & Food Blogger
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