This amazingly tasty dish comes from Diana Henry’s – A Bird In the Hand. Her style of cooking and the simplicity of her recipes should be a winner for most people that don’t want to slave over meals.
I really like this book. There was isn’t a thing in it I wouldn’t eat and it is far superior to every other chicken book I’ve ever seen. She also published A Change of Appetite – which I’ve cooked from many times.
This dish combines sweet potatoes, quinoa, avocado and a chipotle Mayo that is to die for – and of course the chicken. The sweet potatoes are phenomenal – they are roasted and then griddle fried with chilli flakes and cumin seeds pressed into them. Amazingly smoky!
It took a while to make and in hindsight I should have marinated the chicken for a lot longer than I did. I only left it an hour but I think the four hours recommended in the book is more reasonable. Even overnight might be better given how basic the marinade is; it only has lime juice, garlic, a small amount of ground cumin and oil.
This could so easily become a vegetarian salad by swapping out the chicken for Halloumi or maybe even just leaving it out. It would be a great companion to a BBQ.
There are many components to this dish but they are all very achievable; perhaps the Mayo will be a challenge for anyone that doesn’t have a stick blender as to need to add the oil gradually so that the Mayo emulsified. Mine split a little – but i didn’t affect the taste.
The only thing I changed in this recipe was leaving the chicken thighs whole with the bone in. This was more through oversight than choice. When I make it again – I which I will – I’ll remove the bone and slice the chicken into the salad. It’ll be a more enjoyable eat this way I think.
I might even consider preparing the chicken with a ras el hanout marinade as I think a punchier chicken might bring more to the dish.
Friday lunches are a bit hit and miss. Usually because Thursday night is Film Club at work and we don’t tend to get home until quite late. This week we watched ‘Cube’ which is a very low budget Canadian film about some people that have been put in a cube full of rooms and traps. It wasn’t bad but the acting was pretty poor. That said I will be giving Cube Two and Cube Zero a go just to see if they get any better!
We got home pretty late and I prepped the mayo for this before we went to bed. It’s a very good vegan mayo and is almost a runny guacamole. The ingredients are quite similar except for the lack of any chilli.
The may is simply a large avocado, rapeseed oil, a little english mustard and some cider vinegar in my Nutribullet and blitz until smooth. Couldn’t be easier.
Serving was simply some crisp lettuce, chickpeas, the mayo and some sunflower seeds.
The dish is another Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall offering from River Cottage Light and Easy. The mayo had me curious the first time I flicked through the book and I knew it could be used elsewhere so why not give it a go.
Personally I think the mayo didn’t go so well with the chickpeas. The dish was very balanced and was quite tasty but there are better things I would have put it with – even just dipping Nachos in it would have made me happy!
Not bad though! Sorry about the picture – It kind of all got thrown on the plate in a rush!