Duck Egg Curry

Myanmar (Burmese) Duck Egg Curry

Myanmar Duck Egg Curry

Egg curry is a new idea for me, and it really surprised me that I hadn’t considered it before! I tend to bake more than I cook so always have eggs in the house. But often the eggs go passed their best as I struggle to use them up. The main reason I don’t do much cooking is because I don’t like to cook unless there is someone else to cook for. These days my partner is living away as he has gone to university as a mature student, so I find myself having dinner at my sister’s or my mum’s house. Cooking for one can be pretty dull since I tend to stick to a few one-pot recipes.

This Duck Egg Curry I tried for the first time on a recent trip to Myanmar has become my new ‘one pot curry’ recipe! It’s also a tasty way to use up all those left over eggs without having to break out the butter and sugar to bake a cheeky cake… Best served with fresh boiled rice and some stir fried greens!

This dish is commonly found in Myanmar and is a very popular lunch time meal as it is very cheap to make as well as being a quick meal to cook in the morning. I was only in Myanmar for a couple of weeks but learnt that there is still very much a culture of shopping in local wet-markets first thing in the morning. There are more supermarkets popping up in the cities but not many people have refrigerators and electricity is temperamental so it still isn’t practical to stockpile perishable foods.

There are very few ingredients in Duck Egg Curry so can be made from store-cupboard  ingredients if there is no time to visit the market in the morning before the working day starts. In Myanmar it is still the norm that women in the household do the shopping and cooking. As wages are low, it is common to see workers carrying metal tiffin lunch boxes to work in the morning, usually a layer of rice, some curry and some stir fried vegetables. When my colleagues brought out their lunches, I was always excited to see what they had prepared that day. It was so much more exciting than the standard English lunch of sandwiches!

Myanmar Egg Curry

Myanmar Egg Curry

*Recipe courtesy of Harmoneat

Ingredients:

  • 6 Duck Eggs
  • 3 Tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • Shrimp Paste (can fish sauce instead or omit for a vegetarian version)
  • Water
  • 2 tbs Vegetable Oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 Dried Red Chilli
  • 6 Inches Ginger Root, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 Shallots, peeled and roughly chopped

Method:

  • Soak the dried chilli in some warm water for 10 minutes to soften
  • Boil the duck eggs for 5 minutes until hard boiled, once boiled peel the eggs and cut in half horizontally then set to one side
  • Make the curry paste by pounding the re-hydrated chilli, garlic, ginger and shallots in a pestle and mortar until you get a smooth paste (use a blender if you want to be are short on time)
  • In a deep sided frying pan (with a lid) stir fry the curry paste in the vegetable oil to release the fragrance of the spices, around 3 minutes
  • Add the chopped tomatoes, shrimp paste, and a cup of water. Stir to combine and make a thick curry sauce
  • Place all the egg halves face down into the sauce in one even layer and simmer for a few minutes, before turning all the eggs over so the yolks are facing upwards
  • If the sauce is very thick, add some more water before putting the lid on the pan and simmering for 10-15 minutes. Add salt for seasoning
Duck Egg Curry

Duck Egg Curry

I have cooked this recipe using chicken eggs as a substitute very successfully, as duck eggs are a bit harder to come by back home in the UK! This dish is pretty healthy as not a huge amount of oil is used and the eggs yolks bring richness to the curry. It still tastes great without the shrimp paste for vegetarians; I once forgot to add it! 😉

Red Curry Paste

Red Curry Paste

This red curry paste is a very simple recipe that forms the basis for ‘red’ curries in Myanmar. Make a big batch and keep a home made jar in the fridge sealed with a layer of oil for an fresh curry paste free from preservatives! 😀

For more recipes from Myanmar, check out Harmoneat’s website where you can find downloadable recipe cards. 😀

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Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos: Marinated Cod with Guacamole and Red Cabbage Slaw on Home Made Tortillas

Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos

Having invited friends for dinner and wanting to spend a little more time cooking something special, I decided to have a ‘Mexican’ themed meal. Although I love to eat food, I’m not especially keen on cooking meals that have lots of steps. I’m a one pot wonder lover! 🙂

I decided try my hand at making my own tortillas, guacamole, and coleslaw to go with the tacos. So all in all, a lot more than one pot used! 😀

I cooked for 6 people, but there was plenty left over. So here goes…

Cumin and Lemon Marinated Cod

Cumin and Lemon Marinated Cod

  1. Fish

Ingredients

  • 500g white fish (I used cod, but any firm white fish works)
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • Salt and pepper

Method

  • Cut fish into big chucks, put in a medium bowl
  • Squeeze lemon juice over the fish, sprinkle over the cumin powder and salt and pepper
  • Toss the fish in the lemon juice and seasoning, then cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight
  • Take out an hour before cooking to allow the fish to come to room temperature
  • Grill the fish for 8 minutes in the oven (200 degrees C) or pan fry with a little oil until just cooked
Guacamole

Guacamole

2. Guacamole

Ingredients

  • 2 Avocados
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 2 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 2 tbs chopped coriander
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Method

  • Roughly chop the avocado and squeeze over the juice of the lime, ensure all avocado is coated in lime juice
  • Sprinkle cayenne, cumin and salt over the avocado, then mash it all into a chunky paste with a potato masher or fork
  • Add the tomatoes, onions, garlic and coriander and toss it all together until evenly distributed
  • Cover and refrigerate, take out an hour before serving to bring to room temperature
Red Cabbage Slaw

Red Cabbage Slaw

3. Red Cabbage Slaw

Ingredients

  • Small head of red cabbage
  • 2 tsp vegetable oil
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • salt and pepper

Method

  • Finally shred the cabbage, squeeze over the lime and drizzle over the oil
  • Sprinkle over the salt and pepper, toss it all together until cabbage is well coated
Tortillas

Tortillas

4. Tortillas

Ingredients

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅓ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup warm water

Method

  • Mix all ingredients together and knead for about 5 minutes
  • Portion into 16 balls of dough and roll out each one into a small tortilla (6-8 cm)
  • Dry fry each tortilla, on a high heat, for a minute on each side (it may take less time so keep an eye on them!)
  • Keep the cooked tortillas covered with a clean tea towel so they keep soft
Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos

I served all the elements of this dish in separate bowls so the guests could assemble their own tacos.  I also roasted a tray of sweet potatoes to go with the fish tacos, the flavours seemed to work quite well!  Put some extra sour cream and chopped coriander on the table too. 😀

 

 

 

 

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

Dark Chocolate Muffins

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

Wow, it’s been such a long time since I’ve written a post! It’s scary how life just runs away with you… I’ve had a lot less time to experiment with my cooking, but have a lots of little posts to write up. This is the first of many!

I work in the charity sector and we have amazing young people who volunteer their time to support those you are less fortunate than themselves. They travel to the UK from other countries; Germany, Armenia and Sweden, to volunteer for a year before they start their university degrees. During this time, they are full time volunteers and we get to know them very well. It’s always sad to see them go!

These muffins were made as part of their leaving celebrations. As I have been very busy at work, I hadn’t prepared in advance by shopping for the ingredients for some fancier cakes. I had a root around the cupboards and found some dark chocolate, so decided to make some chocolate ‘chip’ muffins.

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

It’s been such a while since I made them, I have forgotten the exact recipe I used… but it went a little something like this:

Ingredients

  • 250g plain flour
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 175ml milk
  • 75ml vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 125g dark chocolate chips

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C. Line a 12 hole muffin tin with paper cases.
  2. In a bowl mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, chocolate chips and salt.
  3. In a jug combine milk, oil and egg, add to the dry ingredients all at once and stir until just combined.
  4. Fill cases 2/3 full  and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until skewer inserted in centre comes out clean.
Chocolate Chip Muffins

Chocolate Chip Muffins

I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of this recipe, although it may be because I used dark chocolate and there isn’t much sugar in the batter do I found it all quite bitter. I’m also not a fan of dark chocolate! 🙂

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

However the muffin was light and it’s quite a straight forward and simple recipe to follow. I’ll have to try them again with come milk chocolate next time! 😀

 

 

 

 

 

St Georges Mushrooms

St Georges Mushrooms: Foraging for wild mushrooms

St Georges Mushrooms

St Georges Mushrooms

How do you feel about wild food foraging? I think a lot of people are comfortable with picking wild blackberries or maybe some elderflower. But what about mushrooms?!

Understandably mushroom foraging is a scary thing as there are some deadly mushrooms out there but what if you knew what you were looking for? I went on a food foraging day a couple of years ago and was extremely taken by the idea of mushroom foraging. I love mushrooms and wild mushrooms are especially delicious, but can be difficult to source in local markets.

St Georges Mushrooms

St Georges Mushrooms

Luckily for me these St Georges Mushrooms are readily available on the park outside my house, however it is sometimes a game of Russian roulette trying to ensure you get them before the grass gets cut!

I have a little mushroom foraging guide book to help identify mushrooms but I only really eat these ones as they are so easy to find. I came across this website that gives lots of useful information too.

The best time to pick the mushrooms are in the morning after there has been some rain. They only need to be brushed down or wiped with a damp cloth to clean (make sure they are growing in a spot where there is little chance of contamination!).

To cook, keep it simple to maintain the fresh ‘mushroomy’ flavours! I like to stick to lightly stir-frying them a simple garlic butter and serving on toast (made from home made bread of course!)

Garlic Butter Wild Mushrooms

Garlic Butter Wild Mushrooms

Garlic Butter Wild Mushrooms on Toast

Garlic Butter Wild Mushrooms on Toast

Would you want to try mushroom foraging now? 🙂

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake Caramel top

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake (Gluten Free and Dairy Free): Clandestine Cake Club meet No. 2

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake with Almond Praline

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake with Almond Praline

I have previously written about the Clandestine Cake Club of which I am a proud member. The mission statement for the CCC is: Bake, Eat and Talk about Cake, so you can see where this post is going… 🙂

The last time I attended a CCC event, I took the Pistachio, Cardamom and Yoghurt Cake and the theme was ‘nouveaux’ -trying out a new recipe or using a new cook book or cake tin etc. This event theme was: ‘the Great British Bake Off! The ultimate baking-together experience. Whether you choose a recipe from one of the winners or something that was featured on the programme, even if you want to recreate the tent in cake, the choice is yours.’

I have to admit that I didn’t actually go with the theme as I forgot all about it! 🙂 The idea was to spend two hours baking a cake that could then be shared with fellow bakers and their friends/family later on. I loved the idea of spending the afternoon baking with people who love cake as much as I do, sharing tips and learning from each other. This is also one of the main reasons I write a food blog! 🙂

So that takes me to the inspiration for my cake. Wendy at Chez Chloe wrote about this recipe for Orange and Almond Cake, and I was absolutely hooked on the simplicity of the recipe!  The recipe if gluten free and dairy free (if you skip the caramel top!) Check out Wendy’s post for a simple step-by-step guide on how to prepare this cake.

With only having 2 hours to bake and decorate a cake, I wanted to go with something very simple but delivers on flavour too. The idea for the additional almond caramel top came from a pear and almond cake that I’ve had in a local coffee shop called ‘Teacup’. I generally love caramel and thought it would be a nice decorative feature that doesn’t rely on the cake being cooled before it can be added on.

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake

So here is how it was done:

Step one: Prepare the cake as Wendy suggests- I used one less egg and an 18″ round loose bottom cake tin. However this meant that the cake took a lot longer to bake, so I would suggest a 23″ round tin.

Step two: While the cake is baking make a basic caramel by simmering 125g butter, 125g butter, 50ml milk and 1/2 tsp sea salt in a saucepan until it is smooth and a deep caramel colour. Mix in 150g toasted almond flakes.

Step three: When the cake is cooked through, pour all the almond caramel mix on top of the cake and bake for another 10 minutes.

Almond Caramel Topping

Almond Caramel Topping

The cake should be served slightly warm, with a little cream if that takes your fancy! I think we could have done with letting it cool a little before cutting into it, however the extra baking time and hungry cake fans meant that this just wasn’t an option! 😀

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake Caramel top

Spanish Orange and Almond Cake Caramel top

The cake was super moist and the slightly bitter caramel topping did a great job of seeping into the top of the cake to create a lovely balance of flavours. Check out Helena’s official write up of the event!

I cannot finish this post without mentioning the amazing Sean from ‘Cook Manchester’ who provide fully equipped professional kitchen hire for small businesses. I had a good chat with Sean about his business and the kinds of people who have used the facilities. He’s a really inspiring guy who is passionate about  food and helping others to realise their dreams of starting their own food business. Please check out the website and share with friends who may be interested in finding out more about the facilities.

Bake-Along at Cook Manchester

Bake-Along at Cook Manchester

 

CCC-Bake Along

CCC-Bake Along

 

Mexican Night: Guacamole, Refried Beans, Salsa, Nachos and Buffalo Wings!

Mexican Night

Mexican Night: Nachos, Guacamole, and Salsa

April 2014 has flown by with little blogging activity from me. Apologies for my absence, however it was my birthday at the beginning of the month and the Easter bank holiday came and went, all in all it has been incredibly busy but so much fun! 🙂

I’ve not cooking a huge amount, and when I have I’ve been trying to take photos for the blog but not always with great success! So this meal was prepared for a night in with some friends to go with a few drinks…

One of the many birthday treats I had was to go to a ‘Latin American’ style restaurant where we started off with nachos and spicy chicken wings. This was my inspiration for this collection of nibbles, full of flavour and easy to eat with your fingers over a long evening of chatter with good company!

Let’s start with the Guacamole! I’ve never made it before, as it is only recently that I’ve eaten avocado. I’ve been informed that this was the ‘best guacamole ever tasted’, so a pretty good recipe!

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/guacamole-recipe.html

Guacamole

This recipe can be found here. I think the secret ingredient is the ground cumin which gives it a nice depth of flavour. Make it ahead so the flavours have time to melt into each other!

Then there is the Salsa!

Salsa

Salsa

This salsa recipe calls for one jalapeño chilli which I didn’t have but I only had pickled jalapeños so substituted that instead. My partner reliably informs me that this is similar to Afghan ‘Salata’. Another recipes that transcends cultures!

Cheesy Nachos

Cheesy Nachos

This is a fairly straight forward recipe for grilled nachos; tortilla chips topped with sour cream, jalapeños, refried beans and plenty of cheese!

Now for the chicken wings. I went with this recipe for Baked Buffalo Wings, as it was pretty straightforward and promised a crispy spiced finish.

Buffalo Wings Preparation

Buffalo Wings Preparation

The key to this recipe is leaving the coated wings in the fridge for at least one hour to dry out. I roasted them in two separate trays to ensure they weren’t over crowded.

Buffalo Wings

Buffalo Wings

Before baking, each piece is dunked into a an emulsion of butter and chilli sauce. Needless to say, they were delicious! Apologies for the terrible photo! 😦

 

Roasted Vegetable Terrine

Roasted Vegetable Terrine

Roasted Vegetable Terrine

Roasted Vegetable Terrine

I’ve never attempted a ‘terrine’ before. I like the look of all the layers of colourful vegetables and have seen it being done on cookery programmes so decided to give it a whirl as part of a Mother’s Day lunch…

I loosely based it on this recipe  for Roasted Vegetable and Goats Cheese Terrine but my mum isn’t keen on goats cheese so I went for mozzarella instead. I also went to town when buying vegetables so used ALOT of different ones. In hindsight it is probably better to stick to a few vegetables that you can repeat the layers with, less time consuming to prepare and allowing the flavours to shine through individually too…

I pretty much spent three hours individually roasting the slices of vegetables and pan frying some. I seasoned with salt and pepper as I went along and added extra flavour by using a layer of sun-dried tomato paste in the middle. You can use whatever takes your fancy! 🙂

So this is how it was constructed:

Vegetable Terrine- Aubergine Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Aubergine Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sweet Potato Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sweet Potato Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sweet Potato Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sweet Potato Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Red Pepper Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Red Pepper Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Mozzarella Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Mozzarella Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sundried Tomato Paste Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Sun-dried Tomato Paste Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Portabello Mushroom Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Portabello Mushroom Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Courgette Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Courgette Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Artichoke Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Artichoke Layer

Vegetable Terrine-  Asparagus Layer

Vegetable Terrine- Asparagus Layer

Vegetable Terrine-  Final layer!

Vegetable Terrine- Final layer!

Vegetable Terrine-  Ready for the fridge

Vegetable Terrine- Ready for the fridge

 

The terrine needs to be made ahead so that it can be kept in the fridge for at least 8 hours to allow the flavours to infuse. I put a heavy bottle on top to squash the layers down so that the terrine holds it shape on turning it out.

Vegetable Terrine - The result!

Vegetable Terrine – The result!

I served the terrine with rosemary and garlic roasted chicken, garlic hassle-back potatoes, red cabbage coleslaw and ‘no knead’ oatmeal bread- all home made!

Roasted Vegetable Terrine, Roast Chicken, Hassel-back potatoes, Red cabbage coleslaw

Roasted Vegetable Terrine, Roast Chicken, Hassel-back potatoes, Red cabbage coleslaw

The different colours and layers looked great but did fall apart a little on cutting. The flavours worked well together, but I’d use more sun-dried tomato paste and cheese next time and fewer different types of vegetables… worth the effort for a special occasion! 😀

 

 

 

Raspberry and Double Chocolate Muffins and Loaf Cake

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

You know it’s been a long time since you’ve made cake when work colleagues start asking for them! Around the same time last year (just after Christmas when everyone was trying to shift a few pounds!) it was the opposite, we were all sick of the sight of cakes and biscuits in the office…

So I dusted off the muffin tin and rummaged for the muffin cases to try out this Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin recipe. This recipe current has 239 positive reviews so I chose to go with this one without even bothering to look at others, why would I ignore such a highly recommended recipe?!

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffin

First thing to note is that the recipe uses ‘cups’ rather than weighing out each ingredient making it very simple to throw together. I usually have some frozen berries in the freezer for emergency baking or fruity sauce making (yes there are instances of such urgent issues in my life). I also have quite a few blocks of chocolate left over from Christmas baking. I’m not a huge fan of eating chocolate on its own so they have gone untouched in case of other dessert making adventures.

The recipe itself calls for white chocolate but I didn’t have enough so I ended up using both white and milk chocolates, hence the ‘double chocolate’ element of the muffin. As with most cake recipes, I reduced the amount of sugar from 1 cup to 2/3 cup. I figured that with all that chocolate in it, it would be sweet enough. On taste testing the muffins (I had to have 2 just to be sure) I would even go for half a cup of sugar depending on how sweet your chocolate is!

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffins and Loaf

Raspberry and Chocolate Muffins and Loaf

I was quite surprised that there is only 50g of butter and 1 egg in this recipe. Relatively low in fat compared to other muffin recipes, an excuse to eat double the amount maybe?

Due to the expanding number of people working in my office I made two batches. The first batch went into a loaf tin and the second batch in 12 muffin cases. I have to say that sticking the the muffins is much quicker. They took 20 minutes but the loaf tin took a good 45 minutes to bake. However, having a cake to cut up is always more enjoyable when with a group of friends with a round of tea and coffee… There are pros and cons to both, but pretty much any cake is always a good thing!

So you can imagine that after baking such lovely cake and muffins for my work mates, I was looking forward to seeing their reactions when they took the initial bite and tasted the tart raspberries with the sweet chocolatey nuggets of goodness. Well something terrible happened, and not for the first time! I FORGOT to take the cakes with me in the morning! Can you imagine the horror when I realised half way into my one hour commute to work? I just dreaded having to tell them all that the cakes I had made especially for them were abandoned on my coffee table 30 miles away… The worst of it was that I wasn’t even due in the office the next day so couldn’t even give them slightly stale cake. Oh well, more for me! 🙂

Their wish has been left unfulfilled…

Mac’n’Cheese with Chicken and Garden Peas

Mac'N'Cheese with Chicken and Peas

Mac’N’Cheese with Chicken and Peas

It’s been a lazy Sunday afternoon of watching TV cooking programmes, which developed into a craving for Mac’N’Cheese! 

There was left over roast chicken in the fridge so I decided to use it up to add some protein to the meal. I also didn’t have any ‘macaroni’ so used good old penne instead! This wasn’t a traditional Mac’N’Cheese recipe, but definitely hit the spot…

Mac'N'Cheese with Chicken and Peas

Mac’N’Cheese with Chicken and Peas

Ingredients

  • 500g penne pasta (or Macaroni if you want to be traditional!)
  • 1 tbs oil
  • 1 white onion (roughly chopped)
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 3 tbs plain flour
  • 500 ml milk
  • 150g mature cheddar cheese
  • half a wheel of Camembert cheese
  • left over roast chicken (about 3 thighs roughly chopped)
  • 2 hand-fulls of frozen peas
  • 2 slices of wholemeal bread (blitzed into breadcrumbs)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Method

  • Boil pasta until al-dente
  • While pasta is cooking, sauté onion in the oil in casserole dish that can be put into the oven
  • When onions are softened, add butter, salt and pepper
  • Once the butter has melted stir in the flour and cook out for a couple of minutes
  • Add milk and simmer until slightly thickened
  • Add cheddar cheese and stir until melted
  • Add the chicken and cooked, drained pasta and peas. Mix it all up so everything is evenly distributed
  • Rip up the Camembert and dot it all over the top of the pasta
  • Spread the breadcrumbs on top and bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes or until the bread crumbs have gone crispy.
  • Serve with a side of vegetables to lighten up the meal a little. We had roasted carrots!
Mac'N'Cheese with Roasted Carrots

Mac’N’Cheese with Roasted Carrots

This calorie laden meal has been extremely satisfying but not something that will feature in the weekly meal plan as it is incredibly rich! I liked the blend of Cheddar and Camembert cheeses as they were very distinct from each other. The peas in the dish helped to lighten the meal a little and the roasted carrots brought some colour and additional texture that was lacking. I have to say that the breadcrumb topping wasn’t as crunchy as I would have liked so maybe would skip it altogether next time!

All in all, it took 30 minutes to cook. For the carrots, I basically washed them and cut into big batons then threw them in a roasting tin with a few smashed garlic cloves and some oil. They were roasting in the oven while I cooked the pasta so everything was ready at the same time. There is loads left over for lunch/dinner tomorrow too so maybe next time I’ll use less pasta!

Spanish Style Chicken: A Quick One Pot Mid-Week Meal

Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

This is the second time in a week I have eaten this meal. The first time was when I went to a friend’s house for dinner. I like it so much that I asked for the recipe and planned to make it again for a mid-week meal.

I have a group of friends that I have known since I was 11 years old. We all went our separate ways for university and have come back together again in adult life as everyone has begun to settle down and start families etc. Since life is so busy we try and meet at least once a month by taking it in turns to cook a 3 course meal and having the girls over for dinner. We’ve been doing it for a while now and it’s working out really well!

So this month we had a lovely Tomato and Red Pepper Soup, Spanish Style Chicken and Chocolate Fudge Cake with Vanilla Ice-cream. How lucky am I? 🙂

So this recipe is from one of the Hairy Biker’s diet cookbooks. I love the Hairy Bikers! I think they are lovely, down to earth guys who love to eat, and share their love of food with everyone. They are great at making recipes that don’t require lots of fancy ingredients and hence do not cost a lot to put together!

To make it an easy one-pot meal I pre-prepared the potatoes by first part cooking them in the micro-wave the night before. You only need to quarter the potatoes and microwave them for 5 minutes then leave to cool! This is my version of the recipe (because I just did it from memory rather than looking up the actual recipe first!).

Baked Spanish Style Chicken

Baked Spanish Style Chicken

Ingredients

  • 6 red skin potatoes (quartered and part cooked in the microwave- see above)
  • 1 medium red onion (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 1 red pepper (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 1 courgette (chopped into largish pieces)
  • 2 handfuls of Chestnut mushrooms (halved)
  • 2 fresh tomatoes (quartered)
  • Chorizo (I used about 8 thin slices as that is all I had- best to get a whole sausage and chop up)
  • 6 chicken thighs (skin on and with bone)
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp dried herbs
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tbs tomato purée
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • sour cream- to serve

Method

  • In a large casserole/baking dish. Put in everything and toss it all together to evenly coat all the vegetables with the tomato purée and olive oil.
  • Lay the chicken pieces on top (skin side up)
  • Bake at 200 degrees C for about 45-50 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Check on it half way through as you may need to turn the vegetables a little. I kept the potatoes near the top so they crispen up a little.
  • Serve in dishes with some sour cream.
Baked Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

Baked Spanish Style Chicken with Sour Cream

This is a great one-pot midweek meal that is so easy to put together and the left-overs can be used up for lunch the next day. I made it a couple of days in advance so the flavours got a chance to mix together more. These days I try and prepare healthy mid-week meals in advance so they can be put straight into the oven with little fuss. And since the weather is terribly cold and miserable at the moment, having a hot and nicely spiced meal brings so much satisfaction after a long day at work! So if you have any suggestions, please feel free to share! 🙂