Jerk Seasoning Blend, AKA Jamaican Jerk, came about as a dry rub for pork, albeit you see it in chicken most often these days. Fact is, it’s way more than just a dry rub, and it rocks on everything from veggies, dressings and marinades, to beef and fish.
Like most signature blends, there really isn’t a go-to version, as every chef has there own swing on it. What you can count on is that it’s a complex mix, often anywhere from 12 to 16 ingredients.
The non-negotiables are serious chile heat at the fore, onion, garlic, cumin, and the warm spices that define Caribbean cuisine – allspice, clove, cinnamon, and nutmeg. What else you put in there, and in what proportion, is up to you.
Some folks will argue that the chile must be Scotch Bonnets, and that’s fair, but I’ll say that any chile with decent heat and a complex fruity background does just fine – remember, it’s your blend.
Here’s my current go to – try it, tweak it, make it yours.
Urban’s Jerk Blend
1 Tablespoon granulated Onion
1 Tablespoon granulated Garlic
2-4 teaspoons Hatch Hot Red Chile
2 teaspoons Sea Salt
2 teaspoons ground Black Pepper
2 teaspoons Lemon Thyme
2 teaspoons Mexican Cane Sugar
1 teaspoon ground Allspice
1 teaspoon dried Parsley
1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground Nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground Clove
1/4 teaspoon ground Cumin
If using whole spices for the pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and cumin, process in a spice grinder to a roughly uniform powder.
Combine all ingredients and run through a single mesh strainer until you have a homogenous blend.
Bottle in clean glass and store in a cool, dry spot out of direct sun.