Grilled Chicken With Saffron Spiced Freekeh and Zahtar Dressing

This dish received a lot of hype before I cooked it, it looks and sounds like it was going to be packed with flavour. However, it wasn’t the case. I really enjoyed it and would happily recommend it. My wife and brother on the other hand were left underwhelmed.

By the time I plated this up I was practically dribbling into the bowl (I gave that one to my brother). The dish looked amazing and smelt delicious. The flavour on the other hand was.. different to what we were expecting. Now I really liked it, it was very citrusy and spicy. There were some issues, I didn’t see the need for the saffron, I can’t say I really tasted it. Also the Freekeh wasn’t as flavourful as it has been before in other meals. I will try this one again one day. I am sure it was my cooking that let the end result down. It is hard to look at that ingredients list and not get a fantastic tasting meal. 

Firstly get your grill on medium high, prep the chicken by putting it on a tray with a bit of salt and pepper mix up some olive oil and lemon zest and massage this into the chicken. Put it to one side while you carry on prepping.

Shallot, c it into thin half moons

Garlic, peel it, grate it.

Red pepper, slice into strips.

Add your shallot to a pan with some oil and cook for 5 minutes to soften. Then add your pepper and cook for another 5 minutes. Next add your garlic and saffron and cook for 1 minute. When ready add 750ml of water and bring to the boil. Once boiling add the Freekeh with salt and pepper and reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 15 minutes.

While the Freekeh is cooking, whack your chicken under the grill, probably for around 10 minutes each side depending on the size of your breasts.

Parsley, chop it

Mint, chop it

Red chilli, finely chop it. 

In a bowl mix up the Zahtar spice, a squeeze of lemon juice, a quarter of the parsley, all the mint, and some olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and then add as much of the chilli as you fancy.

When the Freekeh is cooked drain any excess fluid. Mix in the rest of the parsely and some lemon juice.

Slice the chicken and lay it on a Freekeh bed. Top with the Zahtar dressing and sprinkle any leftover herbs and chilli.

 

 

Bacon Chilli and Butternut Squash Risotto

This risotto is light, fresh and so tasty I nearly didn’t share it with my wife. (her portion may have been slightly smaller than mine.. no more than a couple of tablespoons..three max.. and a few extra bits of squash.. whats four tablespoons when you love someone)

So once you have chopped your onion, garlic,parsley, Chilli, bacon and squash and grated your Parmesan. Get your pan of stock on the boil for your risotto. Put the cubed squash on a pan with some oil and salt and pepper and cook in the oven till soft in the center.  Add a bit of butter and a drizzle of oil to a large pan and cook your onion and bacon till the onion is soft. Next add your Chilli is and garlic and cook for another minute. Now add your rice and fry till it starts to go translucent around the edges. Then start adding your stock a ladle at a time, waiting each time until it has all soaked up defore adding the next. When it is cooked take it off the heat and add the squash with most of your Parmesan some more butter and most of your parsley. Mix it up with the juice of half a lemon. I added some more chilli over mine because well.. why not.

You can actually taste every ingredient in this as you eat it. The squash is amazing as it always is. I love cooking with it, the flavour it gives you after being roasted in the oven is wonderful. The lemon juice for me was the stand out performer. I wouldn’t have thought of putting it in this kind of recipe. I thought it would be to sharp and take away the flavour of the other ingredients. How wrong I was, there was no sharpness just a subtle suggestion of it throughout.

This meal is from our HelloFresh box www.hellofresh.co.uk

Jamie’s Grilled Steak with Herby Brown Rice

Steak that melts in your mouth matched with roasted red pepper, feta cheese and pistachio’s, need I say more.

As I grow older and with the more steak I eat I am finding that I need to cook it less and less. Even since I started the blog, at the beginning I would have said I was a medium/rare kind of guy, now I am definitely in the rare category. It seems the more you cook it the more flavour is lost. Now, I could go on about the cuts of beef and the way they should be cooked but I have just decided to do a separate post on this. 

One of my favourite flavours is roasted red pepper. Most of the time though I have to make do from a jar. Here I actually got to roast them myself, which although is very easy, the change you get from the pepper is amazing. Its hard to describe, the sweet, crisp and crunchy pepper turns into a sweet, soft and err… well, roasted one. The rice is simply mixed with parsley, spring onions, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and the zest and half the juice from a lemon. This is served undereneath the sliced steak and roasted red peppers. This is topped with yogurt with lemon juice and salt and pepper. 

What really makes this dish though is the addition of feta cheese and pistachios. The saltiness of the cheese and that unique flavour from the pistachios make this dish come alive. I loved this meal, it is one of the reasons I enjoy cooking, making something that has few ingredients taste like you have used the whole cupboard and fridge.

This meal is from our HelloFresh box Www.hellofresh.co.uk