Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Chicken in lemon and garlic

I love books. Especially cheap books. And I'm always on the lookout for recipe books, since I'm so food-obsessed.

So I was happy to pick up some cheap books yesterday! Two small ones (Greek and tapas) with 100 recipes, £2 each. A different tapas one, £2.99. And a gorgeous book on feeding birds and what trees to plant and such, with great pictures, £5.

As soon as I spotted the tapas ones I had to have them, because tapas rules. I love that you order maybe 3 or 4 dishes each, and share. It means you can try stuff you wouldn't normally order in case you don't like it, plus you get to experience loads of different tastes. Yum.

And inspired by my new books, I attempted possibly one of my favourite tapas dishes - see title. As is quite common for me, I used the recipe for inspiration and modified it a fair bit. And it turned out good. So here it is. This serves 2 as a main dish, or 4 as part of a tapas meal.

4 chicken thighs, skinned (you could use two breasts (or breast halves if you're American), but to me the dark meat tastes better and has a better texture for this dish - breast is too dry)
3 tbsp olive oil (Spanish would be best)
1 onion, finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced (I use the stuff from a jar because I'm lazy)
250ml white wine (medium or dry)
Grated rind of one lemon
Finely pared rind of one lemon
Juice of the two lemons
2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaved parsley
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tbsp fresh thyme
(You could use all parsley instead of the other herbs. Whatever, it would work fine)

1) Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the onion gently for 5 minutes until soft but not coloured. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.

2) Add the chicken and turn up the heat a little. Fry for 10 minutes until browned, turning occasionally.

3) Deglaze the pan with the wine, scraping up the bits from the bottom of the pan. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the chicken is tender - you may need to add water if the pan gets dry, but you want the wine to have mostly evaporated by the time the chicken's cooked.

4) Add the grated lemon and the juice, and heat through. Let it bubble for a few seconds. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley, then transfer into a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle with the pared rind.

I served this with brown rice cooked in chicken stock, steamed asparagus and a mixed leaf salad. Boiled baby new potatoes, roast potatoes, French beans and spinach (just wilted) would all work very well too. Or just a green salad and crusty bread. Yummy and healthy, but be warned, this will cause some serious garlic breath.

The book says you could use rabbit, turkey or pork instead of the chicken.


  1. I gave up worrying about garlic breath years ago. If those close to you complain, feed them more garlic! Most people are too polite to say anything, so you can pretend you didn't know, and those who love you, will love you anyway.

  2. I just love the diversity of your posts, Anna!! We've gone from Blue Tits, to sex, to recipes! I dread to think what's coming next. ;)

  3. Yeah, that's my pan Rob. Feed everyone garlic, then it's okay!

    Lol Digi, that's what comes of having a short attention span!