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Posts Tagged ‘allspice’

Yotam Ottolenghian Israeli born in Jerusalemowns five restaurants in London and contributes flavoursome recipes to the Guardian on Saturdays, with unusual Middle Eastern taste twists.

Not a great looker--but the taste...!

Ottolenghi’s Chicken is his version of the traditional Palestinian dish, M’sakhan. It is delicately flavoured with soft spices like cinnamon, allspice, and sharpened a little with sumac [dark red and lemony], enhanced with thin slices of  lemon and onion–delicious to bite into–and finished off with za’atar–which is sesame seeds in a mix with oregano, thyme and other herbs.

The chicken pieces are marinaded overnight in these gentle flavours, then roasted for 40 minutes.

Garlicky yogurt sauce & Moroccan bread went well with it at the book launch. For diabetics, better to substitute whole-wheat brown pita bread or brown Basmati rice.

1 chicken–cut up into 8/10 pieces

1 lemon–sliced very thin

2 red onions–sliced very thin

2 cloves of garlic–mashed to a pulp in a pinch of salt

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoons sumac

200 ml stock

1 teaspoon salt 

1 teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons za’atar

50 gms/2 oz pine nuts

for 4/5

Combine the first 11 ingredients in a bowl and mix well together.

  • Let this marinade, covered, in the fridge–preferably overnight.
  • Heat the oven to 200C/400F.
  • Lay the chicken pieces, skin side up, in a roasting pan and cover them with the lemon and onion marinade.
  • Sprinkle over the za’atar.
  • Roast in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes–the juices should run clear when you pierce a leg piece.
  • In a small frying pan gently dry roast the pine nuts.
  • Sprinkle them over the chicken and present the dish to the “table” before serving and enjoy the “oohs!” and “aahs!”.
  • Scatter over some chopped parsley to finish, for colour, if you have some on hand.
Yogurt sauce
 2 125gm pots of no-fat yogurt–whisked to smooth
1 fat clove of garlic–pulped in a pinch of salt
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Whisk all ingredients together into a smooth sauce.
As so much of this dish can be prepared beforehand it is a useful dish for company.
Two chickens roasted together will give you enough to feed 10 people.

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