Some like it hot

Kick up your next happening with these crowd-pleasing eats and drinks – designed with extra spicy ingredients that will make everyone tingle. Fire up your grill, invite your favorite people and enjoy the warmer months ahead. Cheers!

Bull Run Cherry Bomb Chicken

Serves 4-6

  • 1 quart cold water
  • 1/3 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 6-pound whole chicken, cut into parts
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 3 habanero peppers, seeded
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons prepared Thai sweet chili sauce


Combine water, kosher salt and sugar in a saucepan over low heat. Cook until sugar and salt dissolve, 4-5 minutes. Set aside to cool to room temperature. Score skin side of each piece of chicken 2 to 3 times, about 1/8 inch deep. Puree cherry tomatoes, habanero peppers, garlic and allspice with the salt and sugar mixture in a blender until smooth.

Place chicken pieces in a large bowl or lidded container. Pour tomato brine over chicken, making sure all pieces are covered. Refrigerate 4-6 hours. Transfer to a plate or baking sheet lined with paper towels. Pat chicken pieces dry with paper towels.

Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat and lightly oil the grate. Combine thyme, cumin, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and oil in a small bowl. Brush each chicken piece with thyme and oil mixture.

Cook chicken, skin side down, on the preheated grill for 1-2 minutes. Turn each piece and move to indirect heat. Cook until well browned and meat is no longer pink in the center, 30-35 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted near the bone should read 165 degrees F.

Brush each piece with Thai sweet chili sauce. Transfer to a plate and allow chicken to rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Rappahannock Sweet n Spicy Chips

Serves 4-6

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoon chili powder
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 4 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch slices

Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate.

Whisk olive oil, garlic, lime juice, cumin, chili powder, salt and black pepper together in a large bowl. Add sweet potatoes and stir until thoroughly coated.

Place coated sweet potatoes on the preheated grill. Cook, flipping every 5 minutes, until potatoes are crisp around the edges and tender in the middle, about 15-20 minutes.

To kick up the spice, use 2 tablespoons chili oil and 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Old Mill Stormy Punch

Serves 8-10

  • 1 cup dark rum
  • 1 cup white rum
  • 3/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 cups pineapple juice
  • 1 tablespoon ground nutmeg
  • 36 ounces ginger beer
  • 1 lime, sliced
  • 1 orange, sliced
  • 2 cups pineapple chunks
  • 2 fresh jalapenos, sliced thin

Mix rums, juices, nutmeg and fresh fruit in large container and refrigerate. Just prior to serving, pour in ginger beer and garnish with jalapeno slices.

(Thanks to Chef John, ZoeyInTheMiddle and TBell for these sizzling ideas. Send us yours! More recipes at