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“Dirty” bulgur with roast chicken (Red bulgur bi jara)


This dish was originally prepared in a clay pot, hence the term “bi jara”, or “from the clay oven” in the recipe’s name. My version differs from the original, not only in that I have used a regular saucepan instead of a clay pot, but also because I have ‘dirtied’ the rice. A friend of mine inspired me with his dirty rice recipe, where he mixed rice with vegetables and a lot of spices. The chicken is marinated first in the same Mediterranean seasonings that I would later use for the bulgur – each reinforcing the other.

 

Serves 4

 

Ingredients 

2 chicken legs (drumsticks)

For the marinade
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tablespoon of tomato paste
½ teaspoon of ground coriander
½ teaspoon of cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon of ground cumin
Salt and pepper

For the bulgur
200 g (7 oz) of coarse bulgur
Boiling water
3 tablespoons of olive oil
4 French shallots (peeled and whole)
2 garlic cloves (pressed)
1 tablespoon of tomato paste 1 teaspoon of ground coriander
1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon of ground cumin
400 g (14 oz) of tinned tomatoes (cubed)
200 ml (7 fl oz) of chicken stock
Salt and pepper
200 g (7 oz) of tinned chickpeas (rinsed)
150 g (1 cup) of frozen peas

To garnish
1 handful of flat-leaf parsley
(chopped)

Preparation

Put the chicken in a sealable freezer bag with the olive oil, tomato paste, ground coriander, cayenne pepper, ground cumin, salt and pepper. Seal the bag and rub all the marinade ingredients into the chicken. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Heat the oven to 200°C (400°F).

Place the chicken in an ovenproof baking dish. Pour the marinade over the chicken, cover with aluminium foil and bake for 30 minutes. Turn the grill (broiler) on, remove the foil and cook the chicken for another 10 minutes, until golden brown.

Make the bulgur while the chicken is baking in the oven. Pour the bulgur into a bowl and add boiling water to cover. Soak the bulgur for 5 minutes.

In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil on medium heat. Fry the shallots for 3 minutes until golden yellow. Add the garlic and fry for another 2 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, ground coriander, cayenne pepper and ground cumin. Continue cooking the sauce until browned. This intensifies the flavour.

Add the cubed tomatoes, the soaked bulgur and the chicken stock. Salt and pepper to taste. Stir, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Check the bulgur regularly and add some more water or stock if the cooking liquid evaporates too quickly.

After the bulgur has cooked, stir in the chickpeas and the frozen peas. Warm the entire dish for a couple of minutes. Take the pan off the burner, cover and let the whole dish rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Serve the bulgur warm in a dish with the roasted chicken. Garnish liberally with fresh parsley.

 

Recipe extracted from SUMAC: Recipes and stories from Syria by Anas Atassi, published by Murdoch Books, RRP $55.

 

Festive feasting


Christmas; it’s almost inextricably connected to food. And, while there will no doubt be the traditional ham, fruitcake and mini mince pies on the table this year, the festive season is also an opportunity to mix things up. We’ve pulled together our favourite ways to do just that.

 

 

When it comes to Christmas feasting, not everything has to be elaborate.

Why not make simple pleasures just a little bit more special?

Roasted carrots – boring! Lemon-maple roasted carrots, on the other hand – divine!

Roast chicken and vegetables too can get a flavourful twist by adding a simple mustard-tarragon sauce and garnishing with summery pomegranite.

Hasselback potatoes look fantastic, right?

They’re also incredibly simple. Why not try your hand at mini hasselback potatoes with chive butter for a clever looking appetiser that is so tasty it isn’t likely to just be relegated to festive feasting!

When you’re done with that, give hasselback butternut squash with maple-brown butter sauce a go. It’s a unique spin on a classic vege, but the addition of mustard, sweet maple and aromatic brown butter transforms an otherwise boring side dish into something exquisite.

Take your mashed potatoes to the next level by loading them up! Crispy smashed potatoes with cheese and bacon crumb is a great way to level up a plain vegetable.

And why not roast your kumara with coriander this year and drizzle it with a mix of yoghurt and lemon juice to give it a tangy finish?

It will feel like all your Christmases have come at once.


 

Salad Season


‘tis the season of backyard barbecues and beachside picnics. We’ve pulled together summer’s hottest selection of seasonal salads to make eating well, easy!

 

 

RAW BROCCOLI & SMOKED SALMON
Packed with all the goodies – including fibre, protein, iron and a bunch of B vitamins – raw broccoli makes the perfect salad. Pair it with smoked salmon, black olives, toasted seeds, a creamy avocado dressing and plenty of garlic and lemon for a serious flavour kick.

GRILLED SPRING ONIONS WITH CAPERS & PARMESAN
Grilled to perfection, spring onions make the perfect partnership with ripe slices of avocado. Toss in a dash of lemon juice and a sprinkling of salty parmesan, some lightly roasted pumpkin kernels, a drizzle of olive oil and some cracked pepper. It’s the stuff summer dreams are made of.

TRADITIONAL GREEK SALAD
Mix this Mediterranean beauty up with what you have to hand. As a base, throw together cherry tomatoes, diced cucumber, red onion, creamy feta cheese, olives, diced capsicum and capers. Dress it with salt, pepper, oregano and a drizzle of olive oil – perfection on a plate.

STRAWBERRY SALAD & ROAST STRAWBERRY DRESSING
Add fresh strawberries, fresh basil and mint leaves, crunchy walnuts, red onion and crumbled feta to a bed of cos lettuce. To dress, blitz roast strawberries with a teaspoon of dijon mustard, two tablespoons of balsamic vinegar and half a cup of olive oil – divine!

ROAST CHICKEN SALAD
Toss shredded roast chicken with fresh thyme, a dash of lemon juice, cherry tomatoes, garlic, cooked streaky bacon, green beans, croutons, parsley, mint and spring onions. Dress with extra virgin olive oil, the wholegrain mustard and a few good swigs of apple cider vinegar.


 

Sticky soy chicken with sesame noodles


Serves 4

PHOTOGRAPHY: CON POULOS
RECIPES AND STYLING: DONNA HAY

 

Ingredients

1 tbsp light-flavoured extra virgin olive oil
150g (5¼ oz) dried soba noodles, cooked
2 zucchini shredded using a julienne peeler
2 tbsp white or black sesame seeds
coriander (cilantro) leaves, to serve

chicken meatballs
600g (1 lb ¼ oz) chicken mince
¼ cup (50g/1¾ oz) white chia seeds
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp finely grated ginger
2 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 large green chilli, finely chopped
2 green onions (scallions), finely chopped

sticky soy sauce
½ cup (125ml/4¼ fl oz) soy sauce
1 tbsp white miso paste (shiro)
¾ cup (180ml/6 fl oz) mirin (Japanese rice wine)
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
¼ cup (90g/3 oz) honey

Method

Preheat oven to 220°C (425°F).

To make the chicken meatballs, place the chicken, chia seeds, garlic, ginger, hoisin, chilli and onion in a bowl and mix to combine. Roll heaped tablespoons of the mixture into balls, place on a tray lined with baking paper and set aside.

Pour the oil onto a large deep-sided baking tray. Bake for five minutes or until hot. Add the meatballs to the tray and bake for five minutes.

To make the sticky soy sauce, whisk together the soy, miso, mirin, sesame oil, vinegar and honey. Remove the meatballs from the oven and carefully pour the soy mixture over the meatballs. Return to the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the meatballs are cooked through and the pan sauce is thickened.

To serve, place noodles and zucchini into serving bowls and sprinkle with sesame. Top with meatballs, sticky soy sauce and coriander.

 

Recipes extracted from Everyday Fresh by Donna Hay, published by HarperCollins, RRP$50

 

Chicken Musakhan: Recipe


Serves 4

 

Ingredients

1 chicken (about 1.7kg), divided into 4 pieces (1.4kg) or 1kg chicken breasts (between 4 and 6, depending on size), skin on, if you prefer
120ml olive oil, plus 2–3 tbsp extra, to finish
1 tbsp ground cumin
3 tbsp sumac
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground allspice
30g pine nuts
3 large red onions, thinly sliced 2–3mm thick (500g)
4 taboon breads, or any flatbread (such as Arabic flatbread or naan bread) (330g)
5g parsley leaves, roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper

To serve 
300g Greek-style yoghurt
1 lemon, quartered

Preheat the oven to 200°C fan.

Place the chicken in a large mixing bowl with 2 tablespoons of oil, 1 teaspoon of cumin, 1½ teaspoons of sumac, the cinnamon, allspice, 1 teaspoon of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Mix well to combine, then spread out on a parchment-lined baking tray. Roast until the chicken is cooked through. This will take about 30 minutes if starting with breasts and up to 45 minutes if starting with the whole chicken, quartered. Remove from the oven and set aside. Don’t discard any juices which have collected in the tray.

Meanwhile, put 2 tablespoons of oil into a large sauté pan, about 24cm, and place on a medium heat. Add the pine nuts and cook for about 2–3 minutes, stirring constantly, until the nuts are golden brown. Transfer to a bowl lined with kitchen paper (leaving the oil behind in the pan) and set aside. Add the remaining 60ml of oil to the pan, along with the onions and ¾ teaspoon of salt. Return to a medium heat for about 15 minutes, stirring from time to time, until the onions are completely soft and pale golden but not caramelised. Add 2 tablespoons of sumac, the remaining 2 teaspoons of cumin and a grind of black pepper and mix through, until the onions are completely coated. Remove from the heat and set aside.

When ready to assemble the dish, set the oven to a grill setting and slice or tear the bread into quarters or sixths. Place them under the grill for about 2–3 minutes, to crisp up, then arrange them on a large platter. Top the bread with half the onions, followed by all the chicken and any chicken juices left in the tray. Either keep each piece of chicken as it is or else roughly shred it as you plate up, into two or three large chunks. Spoon the remaining onions over the top and sprinkle with the pine nuts, parsley, 1½ teaspoons of sumac and a final drizzle of olive oil. Serve at once, with the yoghurt and a wedge of lemon alongside.

Extracted from ‘Falastin: a cookbook’ by Sami Tamimi and Tara Wigley (Ebury Press, $60). Sami is Executive Head Chef and co-founder of Ottolenghi restaurant in Notting Hill.
Photography by Jenny Zarins

 

All wrapped up


From tex-mex chicken to colourful rainbow veg – we’ve got healthy dinners all wrapped up. It’s time to liven up your dinner plate and lunchbox with some inspired wrap fillings.

 

 

SPICY VEGETABLE AND PANEER WRAPS: Master Chef Gordon Ramsay turned his talented hand to creating this tasty Indian street food inspired wrap, packed with creamy paneer cheese and chopped vegetables cooked with Indian herbs and spices.


GREEK FETA CHEESE SANDWICH WRAP: It might just be time to say “Opa!” to this yummy and nutritious vegetarian wrap, which takes its delicious inspiration from Greece, with tangy feta, juicy black olives and saucy marinated veges.


RAW FOOD BURRITOS: Want a guilt-free option? Why not give lettuce wraps the burrito treatment with coriander, lime juice, and jalapeño peppers. Avocado, tomato and corn round out these super healthy, gluten-free and vegan raw foods.


TEX-MEX CHICKEN QUINOA SALAD WRAPS: Quinoa, beans and chicken make for the perfect protein trifecta. Remember, protein is filling – so you won’t be reaching for the
potato chips a few hours later.


PEANUT CHICKEN WRAPS: These easy, peanut chicken wraps are a simple and healthy lunch recipe. Use soft flour tortillas and fill with seasoned chicken, crunchy coleslaw and peanuts topped with a slightly spicy, homemade sauce.


 

Moroccan Charred Chicken Skewers with Herby Labneh: The Collective


Moroccan flavours are the ultimate way to add flavour to chicken and we’ve got a nice, easy recipe for you to follow.

 

 

Ingredients: 

Labneh:
• 400g tub The Collective Straight Up Unsweetened Yoghurt
• 1 clove garlic, minced
• ½ tsp dried oregano
• ½ tsp dried thyme
• Pinch of chilli flakes
• ½ tsp salt

Chicken skewers:
• 500g chicken thigh, diced
• 2 tsp Moroccan seasoning/Ras el Hanout
• ½ tsp turmeric powder
• ½ tsp smoked paprika
• Extra virgin olive oil
• 1 tbsp runny honey
• 1 lemon
• 2 pita breads, toasted
• Fresh pomegranate, mint and rocket to serve

Preparation: 

  1. To make the labneh, combine the yoghurt, garlic, oregano, thyme, chilli and salt in a bowl. Stir well to combine.
  2. Set a sieve over a large bowl. Within the sieve, lay a piece of cheesecloth or new, clean kitchen cloths. Pour the yoghurt mixture into the middle of the cloth, then bring the cloth edges to the centre and secure with a peg or clip.
  3. Place in the fridge and leave to drain for at least 24 hours, and a maximum of 48 hours. Carefully remove the mixture from the cloth and place into a container and keep refrigerated.
  4. To make the chicken skewers, marinate the chicken by combining the diced thigh, Moroccan seasoning, turmeric, paprika, a drizzle of olive oil, honey and zest of one lemon. Season with salt and pepper, then stir to coat. Cover and marinate in the fridge for a minimum of 30 minutes.
  5. Thread the chicken pieces onto eight metal or soaked wooden skewers. Bring a BBQ or frying pan to a medium high heat, then cook for 5-7 minutes on each side or until lightly charred and cooked through. Cut the zested lemon in half, and place flesh-side down onto the BBQ to caramelise.
  6. To serve, spread the labneh down the side of a large plate, board or platter. Lay the chicken skewers alongside the labneh, with fresh rocket beneath. Garnish the labneh with olive oil, pomegranate, chopped mint and pepper. Serve with the caramelised lemon and toasted pita bread immediately.

 

Unsurpassed medley of rotisserie delights


If you seek evidence that Christchurch has come of age as a cosmopolitan melting pot with its own unique buzz, look no further than Cluck Cluck Slurp.

 

Naturally at home in the Riverside Farmers’ Market, Cluck Cluck Slurp is the brainchild of Joe Ye (of Chinese descent), Madlen Shaw (German born) and Wayne Shaw (Kiwi boy), and it offers an unsurpassed medley of rotisserie delights from a state-of-the-art German Rotisserie, together with ramen dishes to die for.

The Cluck Cluck is created by rotisseried free-range organic chicken from New Zealand’s own Bostocks and is available whole, quarter and half, in meals, sandwiches and salads, and is joined by a rare breed of pork from the soon-to-be organic-rated Burnham Oak.

This winter Madlen is introducing German specialty rotisseried pork knuckles which when added to a cool pilsner, forms a match made in heaven.

Slurp enters the picture with the ramen bowls. With the aim of running as a zero-waste operation, the ramen broth is made from the bones of the chicken and pork.

Food arrives at speed so you don’t spend your precious lunch hour waiting.

Your Friday night takeaways go vibrant and chic with just chicken, chicken with roast potatoes, with salad or with fries, and you can book office lunches to go or inquire about on-site catering options. Cluck Cluck Slurp, yum!


 

Marinated Chicken

Marinated Chicken with coconut lime dressing

 Ingredients 

Serves  4-6

1.5 kg chicken drumsticks scored
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup (125 g) coconut yoghurt
1 teaspoon each of ground coriander, ground cumin, sweet paprika and garam masala
1 small red onion, grated
1 tablespoon lime juice

Coconut lime dressing
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut
Zest and juice of 2 limes
1 teaspoon coconut sugar
1 small green chilli, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander
3 tablespoons avocado or coconut oil
2 tablespoons water

 

 

Method

Place the chicken, turmeric, garlic, yoghurt, spices, onion and lime juice in a shallow bowl and mix well to coat the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for as long as time permits; overnight is ideal.

The next day, combine the coconut lime dressing ingredients in a bowl, add the water and mix well. Bring the chicken drumsticks to room temperature 30 minutes before cooking.

Preheat oven to 200°c. Line a baking tray with baking paper and place chicken on the tray. Cook the drumsticks, turning several times, for 40–50 minutes, until cooked through.
Serve the chicken topped with the coconut lime dressing.

 

Marinated Chicken