Tuesday, 11 May 2010

A Little Sydney Something

After a bit of a break on the blog front (cooking whilst trying to remain in charge of a nose with a cold is not conducive to being able to taste stuff), I'm back in Australia for a few short weeks, and have decided that cooking up a feast for the Parental Units is a good thing to do.

Enter today's edition of The Sydney Morning Herald's Good Living (which apparently doesn't exist online - rude!), and a rather tasty sounding recipe for chicken with saffron, honey and macadamias. Which I will be doing with almonds. Because it's more fitting and that's what's in the cupboard - any problems, you can talk to my Mum!

The chicken has been sitting for an hour, having a little bonding time with all sorts of flavours, and is now in the oven, doing round one of the cooking. Here's the recipe to follow:

2 onions, halved and cut into 1cm wedges
1 red capsicum, cut into thick strips
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp allspice (ground by hand by moi)
good pinch saffron strands, crushed (I gave them a withering glance and a stern talking to)
4 tbs olive oil
2 tbs lemon juice
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
4 chicken marylands (although due to some trick photography, you'll only see 3 in the photos)
100ml water or white wine
150g nuts (almonds, macadamias, mixed - whatever works)
1 tbs rose water
2 tbs honey
2 tbs coriander leaves

The recipe says for the first step, combine the list to follow in a large bowl. I say cut down on washing up and just put it in a large, shallow, ovenproof dish that you'll then use for the actual cooking. So, combine onions, red capsicum, spices, saffron, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a large baking dish. Slash the drumstick of each maryland in two places, place the chicken into the mix as above, massage in all the yummy flavours and leave to sit for at least an hour, if not overnight in the fridge. If you leave everything in the fridge, allow the ingredients to come up to room temperature before placing them in the oven.

Heat the oven to 190 degrees. Add the wine or water to the baking dish, place in the heated oven and bake for 35 minutes.

Scatter the nuts onto a baking tray and roast in the oven for three minutes until golden. Roughly chop the roasted nuts (I just used flaked almonds to keep things simple). Whisk the honey and rose water together, add the nuts and spoon over the chicken at the end of the 35 minutes. Bake it for another ten minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the nuts are golden.

Serve with the coriander. I did basmati rice with it and a simple green salad with a few mint leaves torn through it. Only one photo as it's very slow to upload for some reason.

N.B. I would suggest at least three hours for marinading and make sure to put salt in with the rice. Also, flaked almonds are perhaps not the best choice here - go with whole nuts, roasted and then roughly chopped (the original recipe got it right).

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