Cooking with Ainsley Harriott

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Remember Ainsley Harriott? Well, he is still in the kitchen and cooking up a storm.

To remind us of how great of chef and entertaining cook he is, The Cooking Junket has put together a couple of his fabulous recipes to share with you

First up – a glorious chicken dish with Spanish flavours:

What’s your favourite Ainsley Harriott Recipe? Any epic recipes that are now your family favourites ?

Spanish Spatchcock Chicken with stout wedges and Romesco sauce (Serves 4)

 

 

2x 500g Spatchcock Poussin

3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon of smoked paprika

2 large garlic cloves – crushed

½ teaspoon of freshly chopped thyme

1 teaspoon of crushed mixed peppercorns

4 sweet potatoes – peeled and cut into wedges

400ml can of stout

1 small lemon – cut into thin slices

10 garlic cloves – peeled for roasting

 

Romesco Sauce – from Tarragona, Spain

2 garlic cloves – peeled (roast for fuller flavour)

2 roasted red peppers from a jar – roughly chopped

100g toasted blanched almonds

2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar

5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

A pinch of sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Fresh green salad leaves (edible flowers, micro salad leaves) – used for serving

 

Preheat the oven to 200c (400F)/Gas mark 6. Cut the Poussin along both sides of the backbone and remove the backbone carefully. Flip the Poussin over and press down on the breastbone until cracked– alternatively you can ask your butcher to do this for you.

Mix 2 tablespoons of the olive oil with smoked paprika, crushed garlic, thyme, cracked mixed peppercorns and a little pinch of salt flakes. Rub the Poussin all over with the olive oil mixture and then tuck the wings slightly under the breast. Place the sweet potato wedges into a large roasting tin and toss in the remaining olive oil. Pour the stout over the sweet potato wedges, and add the lemon and whole garlic cloves for added flavour.

Place the seasoned Poussin on a rack set on the roasting tin containing the sweet potato wedges – roast on the middle shelf of the oven for 45 minutes, or until cooked through. Ensure the Poussin skin is nice and crispy, and it is cooked through and tender.

Meanwhile, prepare the Romesco sauce by placing the garlic, peppers, almonds and vinegar into a food processor and blend until smooth. Gradually add the extra virgin olive oil to the mixture whilst it is blending until the mixture becomes smooth. Transfer to a bowl and season with salt and pepper.

Once cooked, transfer the cooked Poussin to a carving board and loosely cover with foil – leaving to rest for about 15 minutes. Give the sweet potatoes a quick shake in the roasting tin and return to the oven while the Poussin is resting. Once rested, chop the Poussin into pieces and arrange on plates, accompanied by the potato wedges, salad leaves and a small bowl of romesco sauce.

This Poussin is also fantastic if cooked on the barbecue whilst being pressed down with foil wrapped bricks. To do this, place the Poussin skin side down over indirect heat and set the foil covered bricks on top and barbecue, covered for 25-30 minutes. Then turn the chicken skin side up and replace bricks. Continue to cook for a further 25-30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

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