Saturday, June 02, 2007

Syrian chicken

Do you ever run into recipes that are just so satisfying to make in terms of the physical preparation? Well, this is one of them. Oh, and it tastes good too! Especially nice is all that ginger cut into strips rather than grated - zesty flavor!

As my son went off to his casual fill in job as dishwasher at a very fancy restaurant this afternoon – Mel and I have never eaten there, but Toby gets to eat their beautiful food on his food break! – he said that I should make sure to save some of that Syrian chicken for him. So it sounds like I can
sometimes compete with a fancy schmantzy restaurant with a French chef, no less! This recipe is from Karen Martini (great name!) who writes for the Sunday Age. She's been away on maternity leave but her column returns tomorrow. Welcome back, Karen!

Syrian chicken with ginger, lemon and saffron

2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
1 tsp ground turmeric
size 14-16 free-range chicken, cut into 8 pieces (NOTE: size 14 = 1.4 kg = 3 lbs, size 16 = 1.6 kg = 3.5 lbs)
100ml olive oil
2 brown onions, thickly sliced
100g fresh ginger, peeled and cut into matchsticks
5 cloves garlic, bruised with the back of a knife
2 small red chillies, split
2 tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2 pinches saffron threads
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
5 sprigs thyme
1 lemon, juiced and zest finely grated
2 tbsp honey
100g currants
2 tbsp vegetable stock powder
1/2 bunch coriander leaves
cooked couscous or rice, to serve

Combine salt, cumin, cinnamon, pepper and turmeric in a large plastic bag or container with well fitting lid.
Add chicken pieces and shake to coat.

Heat olive oil in a large heavy-based pan over high heat. Add chicken and brown on all sides. Remove from pan and set aside. Add onions, ginger, garlic and chillies to pan and cook for 3 minutes, adding a little more oil, if necessary. Add tomatoes, saffron, cumin seeds and thyme and cook for 2 minutes.

Return chicken to pan and add lemon juice and zest, honey, currants, stock powder and enough water to just cover chicken. Cover with a lid and simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes. Uncover and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until chicken is tender and cooked through and sauce is slightly reduced. Stir in coriander. Serve with couscous or rice. Serves 4


Merle said...

Hi Val ~~ Recipe sounds lovely, but a hell of a lot of ingredients!!!
Glad Melbourne had a win today and I watch most of it. Maybe this is the weekend for the under-dogs to win --
like Richmond and CARLTON. One can
only dream. Take care, Val, Love, Merle.

Alice said...

I haven't even read this posting yet because I've just flipped through all the others to the end of the page AND I CAN'T BELIEVE HOW MANY I'VE MISSED WHILST I HAVEN'T BEEN BLOGGING!!!!!!

Hopefully, I'll get them all read soon, but I thought I'd let you know that I'm fine, very well indeed (I did hear that you had made enquiries of a mutual friend). Thank you, dear Val, for your concern.

Gwen said...

Hi Val.
Thanks for your visit,and you are welcome re the 7 random facts.
Talk again soon

PEA said...

With all those spices, I can well imagine how tasty that chicken gets! I've copied the recipe and one day I'll get brave and try it! lol Have a wonderful weekend my friend! xox

Cris said...

Hum Val, just my type of recipe, all that seasoning, it has to taste good. Thanks for sharing, I have the feeling you have more great recipes to share... :-)

Annette said...

Ok, we don't learn if we don't ask questions... What, pray tell, is a size 14 - 16 chicken?

The recipe sounds wonderful with all the spices and the couscous.


Joan said...

Hi Val! It's been a while since I visited here and I sure did pick the right day. That recipe sounds yummy but I too need an explanation of what a size 14-16 chicken is before considering making this. Help!

Princess Banter said...

Yesssssss -- I know what you mean! Cooking can be really therapeutic sometimes!

Merle said...

Hi Val ~~ WOW ~~ Great win and a really good match to watch. I guess
you are a little hoarse this evening.
It sure was terrific yo hear that
Theme Song again. Let's hope we hear a lot more of it. Take care, Love, Merle.

Meow said...

Hi Val. Glad your team won this weekend (they did, didn't they ??). Mine did too, and the Hawks are second on the ladder ... go Hawks !!
Your recipe sounds oh-so-yummy !!
Take care, Meow

"Early Bird" said...

Sounds Yummy!
I don't know why by this post was incredibly easy for me to read ;)
No really the type is huge!
Except for the recipe...

Anonymous said...

Now that does sound good. Don't think I could make it. I'm not much of a cook.

Val said...

Don't know why that font turned into a monster font. I've fixed it up now.

Susie said...

Hi Val,
Bill would love this with all the spices. I've copied it down for a day when I have lots of cooking time!
Thanks for sharing and clarifying the chicken size.

Annette said...

Thank you!


Merle said...

Hi again Val ~~ Thanks for the comment and glad you liked the 1000
mirrors. As you say we are seeing them everywhere this week !!!
And wasn't it good to watch Matty Lappin play so well and get 5 goals.
He is a favorite of mine, and you too I think. Take care, Love, Merle.

lindsaylobe said...

Hi Val – Once retired I intend to do some cooking; that recipe sounds every inviting- must try it !!! In the previous post the train to Sandy Point sounds interesting, where is that roughly?

Best wishes

Jeanette said...

Hi Val, Your recipe sounds very interesting I love chicken but too spicy for me to try.unfortunatly I cant eat a spicy foods.

Kerri said...

Sounds delightful Val. I love ginger and lemon and the spices sound great. I'll have to try it. Thank you!

Sonia A. Mascaro said...

Sounds yummy, Val! Thanks for the recipe!

Thanks for the visit and nice comment. Sure, I also think it's a great idea to make a post with clothesline from Asiatic countries.

I did not forgot the idea of a post with your landscape and mine. I will do it soon.

Granny said...

That recipe sounds good. I might skip the saffron; it's like purchasing platinum but other than that I think I have almost everything except the currants.

Jude said...

Hi Val, How ARE you? Remember me? I just came back to search your blog for the Syrian Chicken recipe. I have made it several times without noticing I had missed copying down one of the ingredients. It was only when I shared the recipe with my daughter the other day that she discovered my mistake. I thought I was very clever to be able track it down again after 3 years. I just wanted to say 'Hi' and that I hope you are well and continuing to enjoy your retirement - as I am. I couldn't find an email address but guess this comment will find its way back to you.

Best regards, Jude