If you don’t have ground meat at hand, cocktail sausages / frankfurters cut into little slices also do the job. Precooked (grilled or roasted) chicken and shredded, works nicely too. I love how versatile this recipe is.
Pasta and Meatballs
For the meatballs –
500g ground turkey
1 onion, finely chopped
1 -2 green / red chillies, finely chopped
Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
2 slices of bread, soaked in water for a minute or so, squeeze to drain all liquid and crumble
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp red chilly powder
A couple of tbsp Vegetable oil
In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients, except the vegetable oil
Form into meatballs.
Heat a pan with a tablespoon of vegetable oil.
Fry the meatballs till they are golden brown.
Take off the heat and keep aside.
NOTE: You may need to fry the meatballs in batches. Add more oil to the pan between batches as needed.
For the sauce –
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/4-1/2 green capsicum, chopped
1/2 tsp dried mixed Italian herbs (you can use fresh if you have them on hand)
1/2 tsp red chilli flakes, optional
1 tsp smoked paprika powder
1 can whole peeled tomatoes / diced tomatoes
Salt, to taste
Freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil
Place a saucepan over medium heat and pour in the olive oil.
Tip in the chopped garlic and saute for a few seconds till nice and fragrant. You do not want the garlic to burn.
Add the onion and fry off till the onions have softened.
Add the capsicum and stir fry for a couple of minutes.
Add the herbs and spices and stir well .
Add the can of tomatoes. If you are using whole peeled tomatoes, just use your spoon to break them down for a chunky sauce. If you want a smoother sauce, blitz the tomatoes in the food processor and then add it to the saucepan. I like mine chunky. (Also worth noting is they say the quality of tomatoes used to can whole, peeled tomatoes is better. The slightly more compromised / bruised ones go to make the canned crushed / diced tomatoes.)
Add salt to taste. Bring to a boil.
I add about 1/4 can of water (use the tomato can to measure and swirl it around to use up all the rest of the tomato sauce) and add as needed, to give you the desired consistency. Let it come to a boil again.
Cover and let the sauce simmer for about 10-15 minutes on low heat. The flavour in the sauce deepens with simmering.
I recently picked up a whole bird from the supermarket. I usually pick up an RSPCA approved product. My take on a roast chicken is usually a very simple, yet flavorful marinade. Of course, you can serve this chicken up at a regular weekend meal or even at a more prominent family get together or party, by putting up some clever sides. I will share some ideas for sides over time. For today, we’ll stick with the roast chicken. So if you’ve never made a roast chicken at home before, this is a good recipe to start with. Chances are you’ll already have all the ingredients in your pantry. I’m sharing this recipe with you today so that you have a little time to try this out before Easter and then maybe, serve it up for Easter as well.
When roasting a chicken, the cooking time will vary based on the sized of the bird. After doing a little reading up, a common rule of thumb for cooking time is 45 minutes per kilo of chicken + 20 minutes. I use this as a guide and this is something you should keep in mind if you’ve never roasted a chicken before. How do you work out cooking time required for a good chicken roast?
1 chicken, whole, skin on (I used a smaller sized one about 1.2kilos )
Salt, to taste
Crushed black pepper, to taste
Juice of half a lemon
1 1/2 tsp Ginger garlic paste
1 – 1 1/2 tbsp Olive oil
Wash and pat the chicken dry using paper towels.
Spread all the marinade ingredients on the chicken as well as in the cavity and rub it in well, almost like a massage. Leave to rest for about an hour.
Heat the oven to 200°C.
This time around, I placed the chicken on the rack in the roasting tray. I think it works well. This way the chicken isn’t cooking in the liquids. The skin turns out crisper.
Place the chicken in the hot oven. After about 10 minutes, lower the oven temperature to 180°C. Bake for required time till the chicken is cooked. Halfway through the cooking process, I baste the chicken with the some olive oil.
(If some of the marinade has dripped onto the roasting tray and seems like its burning, carefully add a splash of water to the tray, just a tiny bit to keep it from burning. I had to do this a couple of times.)
Please note the cooking time instructions above. To check if the chicken is cooked well, insert a sharp knife in the joint where the leg joins the body. If the juices run clear, the chicken is cooked. If it is still pink, the chicken needs to cook more.
When the chicken is cooked, cover with foil and let it rest for about 10 minutes.
Serve up with your favorite sides.
What are some of your favorite sides? I’d love to hear from you.
Chicken on Skewers
250g boneless chicken
1/3 cup plain yogurt
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
1/4 tsp cumin powder
2 tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped
11/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
Olive oil, to drizzle over the chicken
Soak the wooden / bamboo skewers in some cold water for 30 minutes to an hour.
Cut the chicken into cubes.
Mix the spices in the yogurt in a bowl and check for salt levels and adjust if needed.
Add the chicken pieces to the spice mix and toss well to coat.
Cover the bowl with some cling film and leave it to marinate in the fridge for about 4-6 hours or overnight. If you are in a rush, try and let it marinate for atleast an hour.
When you’re ready to bake, carefully thread the chicken pieces onto the wooden skewers. Drizzle some olive oil over the chicken.
I placed the skewers on a foil lined baking dish to catch the drip (since I didn’t want to add to the clean up later).
Bake in a preheated oven (about 180ºC) on the top shelf under the grill, for about 8 to 10 minutes on each side, or until golden and cooked through.
- Don’t cut the chicken pieces too small else they’ll dry out while cooking.
- You may baste the pieces with a little olive oil when you flip them over.
Back to SRC. This month I was assigned a blog called Avocado Pesto written by Vicky. Vicky is fairly new to SRC, this month being her second. Welcome to the club Vicky! I hope you’re having fun here! Do stop by when you get the chance, there’s some lovely recipes you can pick from there. Vicky is soon going to embark on a 2 year trip backpacking around Europe and Asia along with her boyfriend D. It sounds really exciting and I can hardly wait to read about their travel exploits. My husband and I have a similar trip in mind, only not so soon. Maybe a few years down the line, fingers crossed. But I can sure use a few tips.
For this months reveal, I found it incredibly hard to stick to just one recipe. So I decided to do two instead. This was a lovely little meal in itself, easy to put together and incredibly flavorful. I made a delightfully Smokey Potato Salad. And guess what made the salad smokey – BACON. Prior to this, I had never tried bacon in potato salad, but it is so good in there, it makes me wonder why I didn’t try it out before. I used Vicky’s recipe for Grilled Chicken Thighs but pan fried mine instead of grilling it. I had to make a few adjustments due to non availability of a few ingredients. The result was still fantastic. I see myself making this quite a few times. But do forgive the picture quality – I had to use my phone for these pictures since my camera battery had run out of juice. Also, I think exhaustion makes you do some pretty weird stuff. I cannot figure out why I used this plate, you can barely see the chicken. However, do NOT let these pictures fool you. We loved the meal, and if you love fried chicken, bacon and potato salad (not necessarily in that order), I know you will too.
Smokey Potato Salad
(Serves 4-5 as a side)
2-3 potatoes, boiled and cubed
3 rashers of bacon, fried and finely sliced
1 large clove of garlic, minced
3/4 cup yogurt (natural and unflavored)
2 heaped tbsp mayonnaise
2 tbsp chives (I used the dried, bottled variety)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Mix together all the ingredients except the potatoes. Check for seasoning and adjust if needed.
Add the potatoes and stir gently to make sure all the potatoes are well coated with the dressing.
NOTE: This salad makes for great left overs. Keep refrigerated. The smokiness gets more pronounced the next day.
1/4 kg chicken pieces (You can use breast, thighs or chunks)
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp soya sauce
A sprinkle of red chilli flakes, to taste
1 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
Salt, to taste
Mix all the ingredients except the chicken, to form your marinade.
Add the chicken pieces to the marinade and toss well. Keep aside for about 30 minutes.
Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan and fry the chicken pieces till done. (You can also grill them).
Enjoy an awesome weeknight meal!!!
|Left – Aloo Cheese frankie
Right – Chicken Cheese frankie
Hearth and Soul