I might have mentioned it once or twice, I am a man with a very small kitchen. Sometimes I come across recipes that I just don’t have the space to make (for example, everything from Jamie’s 15 minute meals), without a bit of planning this is one such recipe. Lisa Faulkner’s ‘Recipes from my Mother for my Daughter’ is my lovers go to book, mostly for cake and staring, but this is the first time I’ve used it. I was intrigued about Katsu sauce, I’d never heard of it before and it sounded tasty.
The eagle-eyed amoungst you will notice that rather than drumsticks, these are actually thighs… lest we forget that my lover has a perculiar aversion to eating meat off the bone, so here we are with thighs! There’s quite a bizarre reason for making this. Every time I make Nigella’s teriyaki I can never find the recipe, so I call over to my lover to ask what page it is and he always says ’46’. It’s not on page 46, African drumsticks are, so I thought I’d give it a try.
I still can’t find baby leeks. So to console myself I savagely beat some chicken breasts after work.
So I’m not nailing my colours to the mast and saying that spring has sprung, but its not far off! I’ve replanted my window boxes after killing my winter plants, and as a bonus; some crocuses I thought I’d killed last year have come back out for another year 🙂
Happy Anniversary Fiesta Friday! I hope you all had fun last week with cocktails and nibbles while I ate my burned curry… (more…)
Which as we all know means Chicken and Mushrooms in a White Wine Sauce. Yep, I reached for Rachel Khoo again!
Apparently this is a French classic. I dont think I’ve had it, whenever we went to France as kids The Poisoner insisted in going self catered so the only proper homemade French food I’ve had has had terrible things done to it. (more…)
Did I mention that the weather had turned? It has, it’s gone really nippy round our way. This week I was instructed to make something meaty and cosy. I don’t think I’ve used Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Three Good Things on a Plate for a few months, after the beany-kale thing, but the funny smell cleared and for some reason the ‘meat and two veg’ chapter appealed to me…
This is a dish that could feed the masses, it calls for a full chicken, but I wasn’t sure about eating it for a full week when I didn’t know if I liked tarragon. I reckon I could joint the chicken though if I were to cook this for 6-8; I saw Fanny Craddock do it with a pair of secateurs.
To serve 6-8 you will need: a chicken (1.8kg-ish jointed into 8 pieces, skin and bone on), 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 glass of white wine, juice of half a lemon, 500g ripe tomatoes and a bunch of tarragon. Unfortunately I had a slight chicken fail, I couldn’t get hold of any chicken pieces with the skin and bones on, so I got a pack of thighs instead. Ho hum.
Turn the oven on to 190/gas 6 and heat the olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan to a medium-high-ish heat. While these are heating up rub salt and pepper into the chicken pieces. Sear the chicken pieces in the frying pan until they are golden brown all over, then put them in an oven dish. While these are browning squeeze the juice out of the half lemon.
Pour half a glass of white wine into the pan, giving it all a good scrape around the bottom to loosen any chicken from the bottom. Pour into the chicken dish, then add the lemon juice and some more salt and pepper. Foil over the dish and put it in the oven for 30 minutes.
If you’re having this with mash then you’ll need to prepare the potatoes before the thirty minutes is up (and if you’re having it with brown rice you should probably have put the rice on this morning sometime). Also, you’ll need to quarter the tomatoes.
When the 30 minutes is up take the dish from the oven, remove the foil and add the tomatoes (cut side up, snuggling with the chicken pieces) and put them back in the oven for another 20-25 minutes (uncovered)
Check the chicken pieces are cooked and then scatter the chopped up tarragon leaves over the top. Toss everything around to mix in the tarragon and then leave it to stand for a few minutes while the flavours infuse together. Serve.
I would definitely make this again, and I would even make it for other people. I was a little worried about the tarragon because I don’t like aniseed, but it wasn’t strong so I really liked it! I’m not very good with portion control, I accidentally made more than would usually be seen in an episode of Bodger & Badger and I was a little worried that the plates wouldn’t make it to the table… But they did! Hurrah!
I think I could have put a little more wine and lemon juice in because there wasn’t much sauce, maybe a smaller dish would have kept the moisture in? Yum!
Hugh’s Three Good Things on a Plate by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall (Bloomsbury 2012, ISBN 9781408828588)
So this week is a bit of double celebration – I’ve been making a new recipe pretty much every week for the last year (I started on Facebook then moved here later), and this week I had my 4000th viewer… They were probably disappointed that their search for “Nigella Breast” got my schnitzelly ravings.
This cheeky recipe caught me unawares, I was so busy being smug that I already had all the ingredients in the cupboard I didn’t notice that it needs to marinate overnight. So I started it off and then my lover whipped up an omelette.
This recipe comes from the Cupboard Love book, but is inspired by Vivek Singh’s Tikka recipe in ‘The Cinnamon Club Cookbook’ (which I’ve got my eye out for), and is a recipe I’ve had my eye on for most of the last year. What always worried me was having to make the masala, but I decided this time I would do without it.
To make Tikka for two you will need 2 boneless chicken breasts (book says skin on, but I could only get them skin off), half tsp salt, half tsp black pepper, 2 tbs lemon juice, 2cm fresh ginger (finely chopped), 2 cloves garlic (finely chopped), half tsp cumin seeds, half tsp coriander seeds, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tbs yoghurt and 2 tbs olive oil.
Firstly, with your trusty pestle and mortar grind up the cumin and coriander seeds, not too finely but it will smell amazing! Then chop up the garlic and ginger and add to the crushed seeds, then add the paprika.
Pierce the chicken a few times and rub it all over with the salt and pepper. Toss into a bowl with the lemon juice, then add the crushed seeds, herbs, garlic and ginger, and then the olive oil and yoghurt and mix together with the chicken. Cover the bowl and chill for at least 2 hours, but preferably over night.
When you’re ready to cook it crank your oven up as high as it will go, and heat a griddle to a medium high heat. Line a roasting tin with parchment. Fry the chicken skin side down for 3 minutes, then the other side for 2 minutes (season the skin side with some extra salt). Any of the marinade left on the chicken falls off into the pan.
Transfer the chicken to the tray and bake for 10-15 minutes until cooked through. Rest for 5 minutes then slice and serve with rice and chutney.
It was delicious. I’m not just saying that. I loved the dry-ness of it too, I’m not the biggest fan of masala sauce so this was ideal. It went really well with the brown rice and some mango chutney I fould in the cupboard.
Next week a veritable feast for week 52. Hurrah!
Cupboard Love by Tom Norrington-Davies (Hodder & Stoughton 2005 ISBN 0 340 83525 5)
So this was the week that nearly didn’t happen – I asked my lover to choose a recipe because I was crazy busy at work, and I couldn’t find the ingredients for what he chose. So as an emergency replacement, I am very proud to present: Chicken Schnitzel. Tadaaa.
I was interested to try Nigella’s take on Chicken Schnitzel, my Lover made his Polish Grandmother’s Polish Schnitzel (breadcrumbed etc) so I was keen to try it German style.
Absolutely no ingredients: 1 chicken breast each (an escalope), 2 rashers of bacon each, 25ml of white whine each, and a teaspoon of garlic oil for the frying pan.
Nigella says to use escalopes, but as usual I couldn’t find exactly that in Hammersmith Sainsbury’s, so I bashed a pair of breasts with my rolling pin. I could have worded that better… then my lover said I was being too gentle with them then bashed them really flat – about half an inch I think.
Turn the pan on quite high, add the oil and then the bacon.
Fry the bacon until crispy and then set it aside in some foil to keep warm.
Fry the chicken for 2 minutes on each side, make sure you check the chicken is cooked before taking it out the pan (Nigella recommends cutting into it to check for pinkness – mine took about 5 minutes in total)
When the chicken is done plate it up (or remove it to a serving plate if it takes your fancy). Crumble the bacon into the pan, pour in the wine and stir it around until it all bubbles up (this bit happened far too quickly to take a picture)
Pour this over the chicken and eat it. I was surprised how quickly this cooked – if I hadn’t chosen to serve it with oven chips dinner would have been done in 10 minutes!
As my lover just this minute said “This weekend you’ve cooked two quick meals that we’ll definitely have again” and we definitely will. Sorry Babushka, I prefer my Schnitzel German style!
Nigella Express, by Nigella Lawson (Chatto & Windus 2007 ISBN 9780701181840)
Friday again already! I’ve watched Nigella make her Chicken Teriyaki recipe about 19 times on Food Network, so I thought it would be a good recipe to try.
Aside from a slight Sake-buying issue, I managed to find all the ingredients (except the sesame oil which I forgot); I even decided to give sushi rice a go! I’d never had Teriyaki before, so I didn’t know if I’d like it – but I decided if it wasn’t very nice I’d just drink the Sake!
I’m not sure how widely available Sake (Japanese rice wine) or Mirin (Sweet Japanese rice wine) are – you might be lucky if you have a full-sized supermarket near you, or you can get it from the Chinese/oriental supermarket. I got mine from the Thai supermarket, which is also where I get gochujang, fish sauce, and green thai chilli sauce. There’s bound to be one nearby, just not in Chiswick Sainsbury’s.
To make this for 4 you will need: 2 tbs sake, 4tbs Mirin, 4 tbs soy sauce (half this if you’re serving kids or don’t like it salty), 2tbs soft light brown sugar (I used golden caster), 2 tsp grated sugar, a splash of sesame oil, 750g chicken thighs and 1tsp ground nut oil. Serve with rice.
This is quite a quick dish to cook, but takes a while to prepare. Start by mixing the Sake, Mirin, soy sauce, ginger and sesame oil and putting it in a dish with the chicken (which you’ve cut up in to bite sized chunks)
Steep the chicken for 15 minutes, while it’s steeping you can put the rice on. After 15 minutes heat 1 tsp of ground nut oil in a shallow frying pan with a lid, fish the chicken out of the sauce with a slotted spoon and put them in the pan (keep the sauce). Cook the chicken until it looks cooked on the outside.
Pour the sauce into the pan, stir it up and heat until it starts to bubble – turn the heat down to a gentle simmer, put the lid on and cook for 5 minutes (cut open a piece of chicken to check its cooked, but if you’re using really small chunks it will be)
Again with the slotted spoon, fish the chicken out onto a warm plate and cover with foil – then whack up the heat and let the sauce boil down to be thick and syrup-y. Throw the chicken back into the pan and coat with the sauce and serve.
By the time I had done skinning and boning the chicken thighs I was convinced that I would hate the Teriyaki, but I didn’t – it was delicious. Incredibly salty but delicious. Next time I make it it’ll be with boned thighs or breasts, and half the amount of soy, and not on a work night, but it’s definitely one to cook often. Bravo Nigella!
Kitchen, by Nigella Lawson (Chatto & Windus 2010, ISBN 9780701184605)