Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Syrian Chicken –w- Ginger Lemon & Saffron

Hi folks,  it has been a while since my last post, but you know how easy it is to get bogged down in life from time to time. This is a recipe originally published by Karen Martini & passed to me by my foodie friend Jan Smith. Of course I have dabbled with the original recipe, but hey, it's all about personal taste & food should be ever evolving, right? It has everything I love about food from the middle east – it is redolent with spices, ginger, honey, dried fruit, saffron & a touch of chilli. Please don’t be daunted by the long list of ingredients as your efforts will be greatly rewarded with a meal that your friends and family will love. This recipe will serve 4 people with rice or couscous.


2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp ground turmeric
8 organic/free range chicken drumsticks
100 mls olive oil
1 brown onion thickly sliced
2.5 cm fresh ginger, julienned
5 cloves garlic peeled and bruised with the back of a knife
2 small red chillies split or finely chopped if you prefer
2 tomatoes roughly chopped
2 pinches saffron
½ tsp cumin seeds
5 sprigs thyme
1 lemon juiced & zest finely grated
3 tbsp honey
100g currants
chicken stock
!/2 bunch coriander leaves
cooked couscous or rice, to serve


Pre heat oven to 180c.

Combine salt, cumin, cinnamon, pepper and turmeric in a large plastic bag.  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 to just cover chicken. Cover with a lid and cook in oven for 30-40 mins until chicken is tender & cooked through. Remove from oven, take chicken out and boil sauce

Until it is slightly reduced. Return chicken to sauce & stir in coriander. Serve with couscous or rice.