Today we have been making the most of the last day of the school holidays. The sun was shining so we drove down to The Apple Fun Park at Donnybrook. It is a bit of a drive but my boys love it. We can spend well over 4 hours there.
Now they have had an early night ready for school tomorrow and I am sat with a glass of wine and plans for an early night myself. Well sort of an early night, I have a new magazine to read so I plan to curl up in bed with this month's Donna Hay magazine.
I used to have subscriptions to so many food magazines. I had hundreds of them. I started my BBC Good Food collection in 2006! I think at one point I had subscriptions to 6 separate food magazines. I love them and cookbooks. I have well over 100, probably closer to 150, I actually haven't counted the cookbooks in a while. Perhaps I'll have a sort of them this week.
But those magazines, I kept them for years. I was a serious horder. Then we emigrated and I baulked at the cost to ship over 250 magazines. So I parted company with them. I cut out my very favourite recipes and said goodbye. Every now and again I think "oh what about that fish recipe from the Sainsbury magazine" but I know that somewhere online there will be something very similar. And I console myself with the fact that I wouldn't have followed the recipe exactly anyway.
Have I mentioned my weird food memory? 😉 Maybe just once or twice eh? But it is the most particular thing. Ask me to do something and I will, 9 times out of 10, forget unless I write it on my 'To Do' list on the fridge, but I remember meals and food right back to goodness knows when. If asked I could still describe the table and food that my family and I ate for my 18th birthday, or what we all ate when I went out for dinner with 10 other friends back in 2009. I tell you if I could tap into that food memory and use it to remember other things, I would be like Sheldon in Big Bang Theory, only a little less awkward.
The recipe below is the mustard chicken recipe that I mentioned yesterday, it is also something I have been cooking since I first saw Nigel Slater cook a version of it on his tv show 'Nigel Slater's Real Food'. I love Nigel Slater and I love his honest approach to food.
I have played about with the recipe to suit my tastes but the essence and approach is his. It is a recipe that has lasted me over 15 years. I think that is a pretty fair trial of a recipe 😉
I generally use thigh fillets for this, but I was shopping mid school holiday and I didn't notice that the lady at the deli gave me chicken thigh cutlets. I love cutlets as the addition of the skin gives you a tasty, golden, crispy element. BUT....they are an extra faff, which usually mid week I am not able/prepared to do. Does anyone else have 'the menace hour'? Where even the most reasonably behaved children turns into monsters? Either way, cutlets take work and whilst the crispy skin might be delicious sometimes it isn't worth the effort. Especially given that my boys, pull it off and don't eat it anyway!
My boys don't like the extra lemon so I leave it off for them. We usually have this with a pasta based side dish. Either a cheesy spinach one or a simple dish of penne with garlic oil and spinach. Oddly I find when I make dishes that have plenty of herbs in they eat spinach without question. This is why my home made pesto is half basil and half spinach. What they don't know won't cause a mealtime revolt 😉
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Char-Grilled Herb Mustard Chicken
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 4 chicken thighs (boneless fillets or cutlets)
- Crushed sea salt
- Lemon wedges
- Mix together the olive oil, mustard, vinegar, parsley, dried herbs and black pepper. Set aside whilst you deal with the chicken.
- If using cutlets, turn them skin side down and using a sharp knife cut along each side of the bone. Use your fingers and the knife to remove the bone.
- If you are using thigh fillets, just open them up flat.
- Add the chicken to the marinade and leave to marinate for an hour. (I sometimes prepare this in the morning, but whilst the flavours are slightly more pronounced it really isn't a big deal)
- Heat up a griddle pan, heavy bottomed dry frying pan or the outdoor grill/bbq.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and using your fingers push off most of the chunks. Reserve the marinade for cooking later.
- Cook the chicken for 6 minutes on each side, until charred and cooked through.
- Remove the chicken and allow it to rest.
- Add the marinate to the frying pan (or if using a bbq use a clean saucepan) bubble it until it is slightly reduced.
- Pour the sauce around the chicken and serve sprinkled with salt and a wedge of lemon.