Posts Tagged ‘chicken’

This is  a handy lunch or supper dish–for two here; but for four with the simple addition of two extra pieces of chicken and another leek.

It’s adapted from a recipe in Nigel Slater’s impressive tome Tender–a tour de force of loving care. In it he tells the story of the creation of the vegetable patch in the back garden of his London home, and what pleasure it gives him.

He plants, he tends, he gathers and he cooks.

More than just a book of recipes, it’s an enjoyable account of what can be done with a limited space in the heart of a city.

for 2

2 tablespoon olive oil

2 leg and thigh pieces of chicken 

2/3 leeks–outer leaves removed, washed and sliced into 2″ stubs

Juice and zest of a lemon

1 wine glass white wine

500ml stock–I use organic vegetable stock cubes

2 tablespoon parsley–chopped

salt and pepper

ingredients for 2

for 2

  • Heat the oil in a pan and slip in the chicken pieces.
  • Gently color them on both sides on a low to medium heat–8 to 10 minutes in all.
  • Remove them from the pan.
  • Turn the heat to low.
  • Add the leek stubs to the pan and turn them over in the oil.
  • Cover the pan and cook the leeks until they begin to soften–about five minutes.
  • Season the chicken pieces and return them to the pan.
  • Add the wine, the lemon zest and juice, a tablespoon of parsley and the stock.
  • Bring the pan up to the boil, turn the heat down low and cover the pan.
  • Cook at a simmer until the juices run clear when you pierce a piece of the chicken–about 20 minutes.
  • Check the seasoning and sprinkle over the remaining parsley.

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“Horses for courses”–chicken for chills!

“Please–just some broth today!” was the request this morning from the sick bed.

Poor Meredith has been fighting the lurgy since Christmas Day.

Not a person to give in lightly to a tickle in the throat she has been up and back to bed all week.

We were bucked up last night by watching the original Shrek film, which I hadn’t seen.

It is high in the chuckle factor and almost as good a tonic as a bowl of chicken soup.

But this morning after a troublesome night it has to be the real thing–so here goes!

I put in a large pot:

1 chicken–washed

1 carrot

2 sticks of celery–roughly chopped

the outer parts of a fennel bulb–roughly chopped

1 onion–peeled and roughly chopped

1 small garlic bulb–with the top sliced off

3 bay leaves

a couple of parsley sprigs

a couple of slices of fresh ginger

a few peppercorns

3 pints of organic vegetable stock–from cubes and

the kitchen sink (only kidding!).

I bring these slowly up to the simmer–while feeding Beau a little cat milk and reassuring the patient that broth will be ready at the end of a brief snooze–cover it and leave it to bubble for an hour and a half.

Then I remove the cooked(out) vegetables with a slotted spoon and

add a cut up carrot, 

half a cut up fennel bulb and

some broccoli and

cook on until they soften and serve them with the broth.

Now, not meaning any disrespect to “grandma’s”  traditional  cure-all remedy–especially not as in a few days I shall reach the traditional “alloted span” and so must watch my tongue–I always find this broth/soup less than more-ish. So what am I doing wrong?

I notice that in several internet versions tinned chicken broth is used.

Tinned stuff? Really? This seems a bit of a cheat; though anything to lift the spirits I suppose…

As broth is staying on the menu for the next few days–I’m in the market for ideas!

(Our friend Charlotte suggests plenty of leeks and some nutmeg!)

Nevertheless the patient said she was happy with the outcome, but advised that the broth be refridgerated overnight for the fat to rise, be skimmed off and the soup to be reheated.

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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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A bowl of cherry tomatoes waiting their turn, reminded me of this delicious Marcella Hazan recipe–a different summer way with chicken.

The sweetness of the cherry toms is cut by the little black olives from Nice. Meredith bought some last week.

And rosemary is cascading in the garden.

for 4

a free range chicken–cut up in 8/10 pieces

1 tablespoon of olive oil

5 cloves of garlic–peeled and left whole

2 teaspoons of rosemary needles–chopped fine

salt and pepper

4fl oz/100ml white wine

20+ cherry tomatoes

a handful of black nicoise olives 

Trim the excess fat and some of the loose skin from the chicken–tidying it up.

Heat the oil in a large sauté pan with a lid.

Add the rosemary and garlic.

Put in the chicken pieces skin side down and sauté them over a medium high heat.

Nudge them with a spoon after 2 to 3 of minutes–when they move easily without sticking to the pan look to see if they’ve nicely browned. At that point, turn them over and repeat on the reverse side.

When you have a pan of golden chicken pieces season them generously and add the wine.

Let it bubble a little–then cover the pan and cook the chicken for about 30 minutes on a low heat–turning the pieces from time to time to keep them moist. Add a tablespoon or two of water if needed.

Add the tomatoes and olives and cover the pan again.

Cook until the skin of the tomatoes show signs of splitting.

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I found this recipe in Anna del Conte’s Classic Food of Northern Italy. It originates from an Umbrian cook, Zia Lidoria, and though in her version is for rabbit, it works well for chicken. [see below one way to cut up a chicken].

The long initial browning of the chicken is a little scary; the pieces seem to be shrinking alarmingly, but they come back to life when liquid is added.

Browning up

1 chicken–cut up into 8/10 pieces

1 tablespoon sage leaves

3 garlic cloves

6 tablespoons olive oil

5 floz white wine vinegar

5 floz hot water

rind of half a lemon—removed without the white pith

2 tblsps capers—drained and squeezed

4 anchovy fillets

1 tblsp chickpea flour

Salt and pepper

Heat the oil  in a large sauté pan.

Chop the garlic and sage together.

Fry the mixture gently until the garlic begins to colour—a couple of minutes.

Add the chicken pieces to the pan and turn them over well in the garlic, sage and oil mixture.

This is the long bit and will take about 45 minutes!

Keeping the heat low, turn the pieces every few minutes as they begin to take on a good colour.

Hold your nerve and when they are nicely browned add the vinegar and hot water.

Turn the chicken in the liquid, season well with salt and pepper and cover the pan.

Cook on a low heat for a further 40  minutes.

While the chicken cooks on, chop the lemon rind, the capers and the anchovies finely together, then sprinkle in the flour, stirring it in well.

When it’s time, remove the chicken pieces and keep them warm in a heated serving bowl, covered with a lid or foil.

Try the sauce in the pan and if necessary reduce it a little to concentrate the taste.

Stir in the lemon rind mix and cook for a minute.

Pour the sauce over the chicken and serve with brown basmati rice or chickpea mash.

We had some broccoli with it last night.

Mark Bitman of the New York Times bones a chicken in this video and explains clearly how to do it and why there are good reasons to try.

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  • Red cabbage is a member of the strangely named cruciferous family of vegetables (the four petals of their flowers are in the shape of a cross), together with broccoli, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, kale, and bok choy. These are super vegetables with many health benefits claimed for them.
  • Adapted from a Marcella Hazan recipe it has the advantage of being an all-in-one dish. The chicken stays beautifully moist under its warm overcoat of collapsed cabbage.
  • 1 chicken–cut up into eight or more pieces
  • IMG_4655
  • 1 red cabbage (at least 1lb/450gm)–quartered, the white stem removed, and thinly sliced
  • 1 largish onion–peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic–peeled and roughly chopped
  • IMG_4657
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 tablespoons red wine
  • salt and pepper
  • Choose a casserole or terracotta pot large enough to hold the chicken pieces in one layer.
  • Soften the onion and garlic in the oil until the garlic begins to colour–about 10 minutes.
  • IMG_4659
  • Add the cabbage and coat it well with the oily onion and garlic mix. Cook for 15 minutes, turning it over from time to time.


  • IMG_4661
  • Season the cabbage well, then bury the chicken pieces underneath it.
  • Pour over the red wine and cover the pot.
  • Cook for 40–45 minutes, turning the contents over from time to time and taking care it doesn’t burn.


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