This evening’s supper was a typical example of two of the main themes that run through all of the Un-Chef’s cooking.
1.Work with what you have in the cupboards and the refrigerator
2. Colour is an important factor in putting together an attractive and appealing finished dish.
Yesterday, I bought some boneless, skinless chicken thighs without having a clue as to how I was going to prepare them. Well, that might not be quite true, I had in the back of my mind to prepare them Thai-style with ginger and coconut but we didn’t have some of the ingredients that I would have needed. After checking in the fridge, I discovered that we had onions, celery and a few mushrooms. So, my challenge was to turn this into something appetizing.
From the cupboard, I grabbed a can of tomatoes and another of chick peas.
Method: I took 1lb of boneless, skinless chicken thighs, one large onion, finely chopped and 3 sticks of celery cut into julienne strips. I fried all in a large skillet in a little sesame oil (1 tablespoon). I chose a mixture of seasonings from the fridge according to taste: garlic, hot sauce, curry paste, concentrated chicken stock and some ready-prepared fines herbes. I stirred this all in and added 28oz can of stewed tomatoes, 1/2 can of drained chick peas. This was all brought to the boil and finally the mushrooms were added. This was then simmered on low heat while the rest of the food was prepared (approx 5 mins)
Presentation: Because there was a fair amount of liquid generated, I decided to serve this with couscous. To add contrasting colour to an otherwise somewhat bland-looking main dish, I selected some green beans from the vegetable drawer which was steamed in the microwave. The final result is pictured at left.
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