Thursday, July 23, 2009

recipe is : golden roast chicken


1 whole chicken, innards removed, cleaned and patted dry thoroughly with kitchen napkins
1.5 tbsp salt
4 cloves garlic, crushed slightly
3 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs thyme
2 tbsp olive oil


rub the chicken with salt, don't forget the cavity as well

gently separate the skin from the flesh at the breast area and slip in a clove of garlic and a sprig of rosemary and thyme on each side of the chicken breast

stuff the remaining garlic cloves, rosemary and thyme into the chicken cavity

place in a ziplock bag and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight

take out the chicken to thaw to room temperature. preheat oven to 230 celcius

place chicken on a wire tray in a roasting pan, breast side up and rub chicken all over with the olive oil

place chicken into the oven and turn down the heat to 180 celcius after 20 minutes and turn the chicken to have the breast side down and roast for a further 30 minutes. this is for a more even browning and a crisper skin. turn the chicken breast side up again and roast for another 10 minutes. remove from oven, let rest for 10 minutes and carve

notes: i normally clean, pat dry and marinate the chicken right after purchase and leave it in the freezer. it does take longer to thaw the chicken to room temperature, but the marinade penetrates better and the flavour is much, much better

instead of a wire tray, i rest the chicken on top of a bed of sturdy veggies like carrots, whole onions or even some potato wedges or whole baby potatoes to roast

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

recipe is : almost pesto pasta

this recipe is 'almost' pesto cos i've omitted the pinenuts. and it would not be pesto if there's no pinenuts or nuts of any sort will it? so i just call it 'almost pesto' for now, til i can come up with a name for it.

the herb paste on its own makes an excellent dip or dressing as well, with or without adding the cream.


2 chicken breasts, sliced into long strips of about 3cm, season with a bit of salt and set aside to marinate for 30 mins

Herb paste -
2 handfuls basil
3/4 - 1 head garlic, skinned
1 handful coriander
50 mls (at least) olive oil

250 ml cream
1 cup sliced button mushroom
2 handfuls grated parmesan cheese
400 gms penne
sprigs of basil and coriander
salt to taste
coarse black pepper to taste (optional)


in a food processor or a blender, blitz the basil, garlic, coriander and the olive oil. set aside

in a big pot, boil the penne in slightly salted water until done to preferred softness. turn off flame

in a large pan pour in a bit of oil and stir fry the chicken until just cooked. add the herb paste and stir fry for a few minutes. add the button mushroom, the cream, parmesan, basil and coriander sprigs, mix well. add a bit of the pasta water to thin out the sauce a bit. season with salt and black pepper

drain out the penne and pour into the sauce, mix well and serve hot

note: the cream can be substituted with full cream milk for a less thick sauce. it would not be too runny as the cheese will help thicken it a bit