CHICKEN


THIS WEEK'S FAVORITE CHICKEN RECIPE:

tea brined chicken practical boat cook

Sweet Tea-Brined Chicken

Everyone loves tea - and chicken is no different, try this wonderful recipe which marries the two flavors magically.

Where would we be without chicken.  One of the most versatile foods that you can buy, and usually cheap.  Chicken should not be kept out of the fridge, however, should you cook your chicken in a pressure cooker, and want to eat it the next day without having to put in a fridge, leave the lid untouched after cooking, and bring up to pressure for a minimum of 2 mins the next day and it will be ok.  Below is a selection of tasty chicken recipes, giving you an idea of just how versatile chicken is.

Alternatively try one of the fantastic recipes below, each one is available to read or download for free.



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                        vegan and vegetarian OVEN BAKING

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                      vegan and vegetarian ONE POT CHICKEN AND RICE

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                      vegan and vegetarian CHICKEN AND MUSHROOM STROGANOFF

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                      vegan and vegetarian ITALIAN CHICKEN

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                      vegan and vegetarian GREEK LEMON AND DILL CHICKEN

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                      vegan and vegetarian THAI RED CHICKEN CURRY

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                      vegan and vegetarian SPICY MOROCCAN CHICKEN

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                      vegan and vegetarian CHICKEN IN PARCHMENT

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                      vegan and vegetarian CRANBERRY CHICKEN ROLLS

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                      vegan and vegetarian LEMON AND SAGE CHICKEN BREASTS

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                      vegan and vegetarian ORANGE CHICKEN WITH RICE

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                      vegan and vegetarian CHICKEN KIEV

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                      vegan and vegetarian STUFFING

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                      vegan and vegetarian TRUSSING

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                      beans recipes vegan and vegetarian ROAST

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                      vegan and vegetarian CHICKEN AND VEGETABLES 

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                      vegan and vegetarian Sweet Tea-Brined Chicken

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                      vegan and vegetarian BAKED PASTA WITH CHICKEN AND SAUSAGE

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                      vegan and vegetarian Turkey Larb

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                      vegan and vegetarian Torrisi's Turkey

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                      vegan and vegetarian Tandoori Chicken

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                      vegan and vegetarian Spice-Roasted Chicken, Red Onions, Carrots and Parsnips

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                      vegan and vegetarian Perfect Poached Chicken

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                      vegan and vegetarian Moroccan Chicken with Olives and Lemon (Chicken Tagine)

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                      vegan and vegetarian Momofuku Chicken Wings

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                      vegan and vegetarian Grilled Red Chile-Buttermilk Brined Chicken With Spicy Mango-Honey Glaze

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                      vegan and vegetarian Chicken Picata

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                      vegan and vegetarian Chicken Marbella

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                      vegan and vegetarian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

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                      vegan and vegetarian Chicken Cutlets with Porcini Sauce

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                      vegan and vegetarian Murgh Makhani (Butter Chicken)

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                      vegan and vegetarian Barbecue Chicken with Alabama White Barbecue Sauce

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                      vegan and vegetarian Chinese Chicken Salad

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                        beans recipes vegan and vegetarian Jamaican jerk chicken




How To Cook Chicken Breasts in the Oven

Ingredients
Butter or olive oil
1 or more boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
Other spices or seasonings  MORE ON SPICES...

Equipment
Baking dish
Parchment paper

PREPARATION

Heat the oven to 400°F with a rack in the middle position. Rub the pan and one side of the parchment paper with butter or olive oil; this prevents the chicken from sticking.

Pat the chicken dry and rub with a little butter or olive oil, if desired. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and any other favorite seasonings.

Place the chicken breasts in the baking dish, spaced slightly apart. You can also tuck herbs or lemon wedges around the chicken for extra flavor.

Lay the parchment, butter-side down, over the chicken. Tuck the edges into the pan and press the parchment down so that it's snug around the chicken. The chicken breasts should be completely covered with the parchment.

Transfer the chicken to the oven until the chicken is completely opaque all the way through and registers 165°F on an instant-read thermometer. Start checking after 20 minutes; total cooking time is usually 30 to 40 minutes.

The above will give you succulent chicken every time, serve with some vegetables or salad and fresh bread.



One Pot Chicken and Rice

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Nothing could be simpler, or tastier.  a one pot wonder.

1 (3- to 3-1/2-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
6 cups water
2 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups long- or whole-grain rice, rinsed

PREPARATION


In a large pot, bring all ingredients except rice to a boil over medium-high heat.  Cover and allow to boil 35 minutes (10 mins in a pressure cooker).  Add rice and cook 25 to 30 minutes (10 mins in a pressure cooker), or until rice is tender, no pink remains in chicken, and chicken juices run clear.



CHICKEN AND MUSHROOM STROGANOFF

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Serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all−purpose flour
1 medium red onion, chopped
8 ounces mushrooms, quartered
1 to 1−1/2 cup chicken broth
2 tablespoons prepared coarse−grain mustard
1/2 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 cups cooked egg noodles

PREPARATION

In large non−stick fry pan, melt butter over high heat. Place flour in pie pan; add chicken and turn to coat well. Place chicken in fry pan and cook, turning about 5 minutes to brown well on both sides. Stir in onions, mushrooms and any unused flour. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring, until onion is golden brown, about 5 minutes. In small bowl, whisk together chicken broth and mustard. Pour mixture into fry pan and stir. Bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer and cook about 5 minutes. Stir in sour cream and parsley and simmer for 2 additional minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve over egg noodles.





Italian Chicken

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Serves 4

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1
/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 pound fresh mushrooms, quartered
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 3/4 cups beef broth (stock cubes are perfect here)
1 (28-ounce) jar spaghetti sauce
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, un-drained
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Preparation

1. In a shallow dish, combine flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the black pepper. Roll chicken in flour mixture, coating completely.

2. In a large pan (or pressure cooker) over high heat, heat 3 tablespoons oil until hot; brown chicken on all sides 5 minutes. Remove chicken from pot; set aside. Add mushrooms, green pepper, onion, garlic, and remaining oil to pot and cook 5 minutes, or until onions are tender, stirring occasionally.

3.  Add remaining ingredients, including remaining salt; return chicken to pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 30 minutes (5-8 mins in a pressure cooker), or until chicken is fork-tender, stirring occasionally. 

Try changing chicken for pork or beef, thus being able to serve this great meal more than one time a week.

NOTE:  This is perfect cooked in a pressure cooker, saving time and gas.  More on pressure cooking times...



Greek Lemon and Dill Chicken

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Lemon and dill come together to create a quick Greek-inspired pan sauce for simple sautéed chicken breasts.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, (1-1 1/4 pounds)
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup onions, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
2 teaspoons flour
2 tablespoons dill, chopped fresh
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper

PREPARATION
Season chicken breasts on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and sear until well browned on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to a plate and tent with foil.

Reduce heat to medium. Add the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Whisk broth, flour, 1 tablespoon dill and lemon juice in a measuring cup and add to pan. Cook, whisking, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.

Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the pan; reduce heat to low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 4 minutes. Season sauce with salt and pepper and spoon over the chicken. Garnish with the remaining 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill.


THAI RED CHICKEN CURRY

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Serves 4

This really is about as easy as curry gets.  So, no need to nip out for a quick curry with a difference, this recipe only takes about 20 mins to make, less time than it takes to get to the restaurant.

2 teaspoons olive oil
450g chicken breast fillets, cut into strips

1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste

1 small courgette, halved lengthways and sliced

1 red pepper, sliced into strips

1 medium carrot, sliced
1 red onion, quartered then sliced
400g tin light coconut milk
1 tablespoon cornflour

2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander

PREPARATION

Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add the chicken pieces; cook and stir for about 3 minutes. Mix in the curry paste, courgette, pepper, carrot and onion. Cook and stir for a few minutes.

Whisk together the coconut milk and cornflour to dissolve, then add to chicken mixture. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer over medium heat for 1 minute, or until thickened. Right before serving, stir in the coriander.
Serve with wedges of lime.



Spicy Moroccan Chicken

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This spicy chicken stew has its roots in North Africa, and by adding couscous it really does bring out all those wonderful flavors.

serves 4

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 kilo chicken breast, cut into large cubes

3 onions, minced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 litre chicken stock

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon ground coriander

1 tablespoon ground sage

1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 tablespoon ground paprika

salt and pepper to taste

4 carrots, peeled and cut into thick slices

4 courgettes, washed and cut into thick slices

50g fresh parsley, minced

1 (400g) tin chickpeas, drained

1kg couscous

100g butter, diced

PREPARATION

Heat the oil in a casserole over high heat and cook the chicken for 5 minutes or until brown. Add the onions and garlic to the casserole and cook for several more minutes or until golden brown.

Add the chicken stock, cumin, coriander, sage, chilli and paprika. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the  carrots, courgettes and parsley and simmer for 1 hour. Stir in the chickpeas and cook for 10 minutes.

Prepare the couscous according to the packet instructions. Add the butter to the couscous and mix well with a fork, separating the grains to prevent lumps from forming.




CHICKEN IN PARCHMENT 

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A healthy meal with a real difference.
Serves 4

  • 1 pound baby bok choy, trimmed and leaves separated
  • 12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken-breast halves (about 6 ounces each), pounded 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees with racks in upper and lower thirds. Cut four 12-by-17-inch pieces of parchment. Fold each in half crosswise to make a crease, then unfold and lay flat. Toss together bok choy leaves, tomatoes, shallot, 1 teaspoon thyme leaves, and oil in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

  2. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dividing evenly, place bok choy mixture on one side of crease on each piece of parchment, then top with chicken and 2 thyme sprigs. Drizzle each with 1 tablespoon wine. Fold parchment over, then make small overlapping pleats to seal and create half-moon-shaped packets.

  3. Bake on 2 rimmed baking sheets until chicken is cooked through, 22 minutes. Transfer to plates; serve immediately, carefully cutting packets open with kitchen shears.


***


Cranberry Chicken Rolls

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Serves 4 people

4 chicken escalopes
4 fl oz (115 ml) of cranberry juice
2 tbsp of vegetable oil
½ tsp of arrowroot mixed with ½ tsp of water
salt and pepper

For the stuffing
6 oz (170 g) of seedless red grapes
3 ½ oz (100 g) of cranberries
1 large red apple, quartered
1 tbsp of honey
2 tsp of finely chopped fresh ginger
½ tsp of ground allspice

PREPARATION
  1. First of all prepare the stuffing. To do this, finely chop the red grapes, cranberries and apple.
  2. Pour the fruit into a sieve with a bowl placed underneath and drain off the fruit juices. Set the juice aside until later.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together the chopped fruit, honey, ginger and allspice until all ingredients are thoroughly and evenly combined.
  4. Take the chicken escalopes and place them on a clean board. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Next, spread the fruit stuffing evenly over the escalopes, leaving a gap around the edges so that the stuffing will not fall out during cooking.
  6. Carefully roll the escalopes, trying to keep the stuffing inside as you do so, and then secure the end in place with cocktail sticks or tie the escalopes in several places with string.
  7. Heat the vegetable oil in a large frying pan, add the four stuffed escalopes and gently cook them for 5 - 7 minutes until all sides of the chicken have browned nicely. Cook on a fairly high heat.
  8. Then add the drained fruit juice from earlier and the cranberry juice, stir together and bring to the boil.
  9. Reduce the heat, cover the frying pan with a lid and simmer gently for around 20 minutes. Turn the rolls several times during cooking to ensure that all of the chicken is cooked through.
  10. After 20 minutes remove the chicken rolls from the frying pan and set aside, keeping them warm.
  11. Bring the liquid in the frying pan to the boil and continue to boil the liquid until it reduces to about 6 fl oz (170 ml).
  12. Then add the arrowroot and water and boil for another 2 minutes. This will then be ready to serve as a sauce.
  13. Cut the string or remove the cocktail sticks from the chicken rolls. Slice the chicken rolls into 1-inch slices and serve with the sauce.

***

Lemon and Sage Chicken Breasts

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Serves 4 people
4 6oz (170 g) chicken breast cutlets
4 oz (115 g) of fine breadcrumbs
2 fl oz (55 ml) of freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 tbsp of vegetable oil
1 tbsp of grated lemon rind
1 tbsp of freshly chopped sage
salt and pepper

PREPARATION
  1. Flatten each chicken cutlet with the flat side of a meat mallet or with the base of a saucepan to ¼ inch thick. It is best to place the cutlets between two pieces of cling film or grease proof paper.
  2. Season the cutlets with salt and pepper after removing them from the paper or cling film.
  3. In a small mixing bowl, combine the freshly squeezed lemon juice, two tbsp of the oil, the lemon rind and the sage, stirring thoroughly to mix well.
  4. Place the cutlets in a large shallow dish and pour the lemon juice mixture over them, rubbing the mixture into the meat.
  5. Sat aside for 20 minutes to marinate.
  6. In a large frying pan, heat the remaining vegetable oil until it gets hot.
  7. Whilst the oil is heating, roll the cutlets in the breadcrumbs, ensuring an even coating on each cutlet.
  8. Once the oil is hot enough, add the coated cutlets and fry for about 3 minutes on each side or until the breadcrumbs turn a crispy light brown color.
  9. Remove the cutlets from the frying pan, draining off any excess oil and serve.


***

Orange Chicken With Rice

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Serves 4 people

1 lb (450 g) of skinless chicken fillets
12 oz (340 g) of cooked brown rice
8 oz (225 g) of small broccoli florets
½ pint (300 ml) of unsweetened orange juice
1 large diced courgette
1 large orange
1 medium chopped onion
1 tbsp of olive oil
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper
To Garnish
1 oz (30 g) of pitted black olives, quartered chopped basil leaves
Method
  1. Take the fillets and cut them into thin strips with a sharp knife, trimming off any excess fat.
  2. In a large frying pan heat the olive oil.
  3. Add the chopped onion and the strips and cook gently for 4 - 5 minutes, until the onion has softened and the turkey has browned.
  4. Pour the unsweetened orange juice into the frying pan, add the bay leaf plus the salt and pepper.
  5. Stir the ingredients well and bring to the boil.
  6. Once the orange juice begins to boil, reduce to a moderate heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  7. In the meantime, cook the broccoli florets for 2 minutes in boiling water in a large saucepan.
  8. After the 2 minutes add the diced courgette, bring back to the boil and cook for another 3 minutes.
  9. Remove from the heat, drain the vegetables and place to one side.
  10. Now, peel the orange using a small sharp knife, removing the skin and white pith as much as possible.
  11. Cut the orange into thin slices and then cut the slices in half and half again.
  12. Add the broccoli, courgette, orange pieces and the cooked brown rice to the chicken mixture. Stir all the ingredients together and cook for a further 4 - 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  13. Add more salt and pepper to season if you wish.
  14. Once the chicken rice is very hot it will be ready to serve.
  15. Garnish with the quartered black olives and chopped basil leaves.


***

Serves 4 people

4 6oz (170 g) chicken cutlets
4 oz (115 g) of fine breadcrumbs
4 oz (115 g) of butter
3 beaten eggs
2 tbsp of freshly chopped chives
1 tsp of grated orange rind
vegetable oil
plain flour
salt and pepper
orange wedges
parsley

PREPARARTION
  1. Take each chicken cutlet separately and place it inside a clear polythene bag or between two pieces of cling film.
  2. With the smooth side of a meat mallet or with the bottom of a saucepan, beat and flatten the cutlet until it is about ¼ inch thick, taking care not to tear the meat.
  3. Remove from the bag or cling film pieces and season both sides with the salt and pepper.
  4. Cut the butter into 4 rectangular pieces and place one piece in the middle of each cutlet horizontally.
  5. Sprinkle a little of the grated orange rind and the chives onto the butter pieces and surrounding chicken.
  6. Fold the sides of the cutlet in slightly and then roll up from one end.
  7. Secure tightly with one or two cocktail sticks.
  8. Place a small amount of flour in a shallow bowl or dish, place the beaten eggs in another similar bowl, and finally the breadcrumbs with some black pepper in a third dish.
  9. Lightly coat the cutlets with the flour by rolling them in the bowl containing the flour.
  10. Following this, place each cutlet into the bowl with the beaten eggs, covering them completely with the eggs.
  11. Finally, roll the cutlets in the breadcrumbs, making sure that each cutlet is evenly coated.
  12. Transfer the rolls to a plate and place in the fridge for 1 hour.
  13. Heat enough oil to form a ½ inch layer in the bottom of a large frying pan until hot.
  14. Add the chicken rolls and fry on a moderate heat for 15 - 20 minutes, turning occasionally during cooking, until the breadcrumbs have turned crispy and a nice golden colour.
  15. Remove the chicken rolls from the pan and dry off any excess oil by patting with paper towels.
  16. Before serving, remove the cocktail sticks and then garnish with the orange wedges and the parsley.


***

STUFFING

There seems to be some controversy around the subject of stuffing poultry, mainly due to food safety reasons.

If the stuffing has not been prepared correctly or cooked properly, this may lead to contamination and subsequent illness after eating. An over-stuffed bird may result in the poultry meat being under-cooked, which can also cause food poisoning and severe illness.

For these reasons, some people recommend that the prepared stuffing should be cooked on a separate roasting tray from the poultry so that contamination does not occur.

However, if you do choose to stuff your chicken or turkey with your own delicious homemade stuffing, as long as you adhere to the strict safety instructions for preparation of the stuffing and cooking times and temperature, there should not be any problems.

Below we will offer a number of recipes for stuffing poultry, but first we will explain how to prepare, stuff and cook the stuffed chicken or turkey, whilst adhering to the correct safety measures.

If you prefer to do so, you may prepare your choice of stuffing well in advance. However, it is vital that you keep the wet ingredients separate from the dry ingredients right up until you are just about to stuff the cavity of your chosen bird.

To make stuffing, only cooked ingredients should be used. Nevertheless, all stuffing ingredients should be cooled before mixing the stuffing and inserting it into the body cavity of the bird. Warm stuffing can create bacteria and lead to poisoning if subsequently not cooked properly.

Before inserting the stuffing, you should clean the bird thoroughly inside and out with water and then pat dry with a paper towel.

Once the stuffing has been thoroughly mixed together, loosely fill the neck and body cavities, by spooning the stuffing mixture into these areas.

As a guideline, allow ¾ of a cup of stuffing per pound of meat. In other words, if you have a 6 lb bird, you will need 4½ cups of stuffing.

It is crucial that the body cavity is loosely filled with stuffing and not packed tight, as the stuffing will increase during cooking, as juices from the meat are absorbed. Too much stuffing could prevent the poultry meat from being properly and thoroughly cooked.

After stuffing the bird, you may want to truss it so that the stuffing does not come out during cookinG.

Make sure to check the roasting times of a stuffed bird, as generally you will have to add an extra half an hour onto the cooking time of an un-stuffed bird.

Use a meat thermometer during cooking, to ensure that correct temperatures have been reached. Stuffing must be cooked to a temperature of 165°F (75°C), whilst the inner thigh meat of the bird must reach a temperature of 180°F (82°C). If these temperatures are not obtained, the meat or the stuffing will be under cooked and all bacteria may not be destroyed. The bird should remain in the oven until the correct temperatures have been attained.

Sage and onion stuffing

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80g / 3 oz of breadcrumbs
1 finely chopped onion
1 tbsp of freshly chopped sage
1 tbsp of vegetable oil
1 beaten egg
salt and pepper
PREPARATION
  1. In a small frying pan gently fry the chopped onion with the oil until it is soft.
  2. Place the cooked onion into a mixing bowl and add the breadcrumbs, sage, salt and pepper. Mix together well.
  3. Add the beaten egg to the mixture and bind the ingredients together to form the stuffing mixture.
  4. Immediately loosely stuff the body cavity of the bird with the stuffing and place in a preheated oven.

Sausage and apple stuffing


1 lb (450 g) of pork sausage meat
3 peeled and chopped apples
1 chopped onion
1 cup of chopped celery
4 cups of fresh breadcrumbs
2 eggs
freshly chopped parsley
salt and pepper
PREPARATION 
  1. In a large saucepan cook the sausage meat until it has browned, breaking the meat up with a fork whilst cooking.
  2. Drain away the meat juices and fat but leave ¼ of a cup of the juices in the pan to fry the vegetables in.
  3. Transfer the cooked sausage meat to a large mixing bowl.
  4. Fry the chopped apples, celery and onion in the saucepan with the sausage meat drippings for about 10 minutes until all the ingredients are fairly soft.
  5. Remove from the heat and add to the sausage meat together with the breadcrumbs, parsley and salt and pepper and mix all the ingredients well.
  6. Finally, add the two eggs, mix thoroughly to bind and form the stuffing and use immediately.

Mushroom and apple stuffing

(for a 6lb bird)
½ lb (225 g) of quartered fresh mushrooms
1 cup of peeled and diced apple
1 small chopped onion
½ a cup of chopped celery
6 cups of breadcrumbs
3 tbsp of butter
¾ of a cup of chicken stock
1 beaten egg
½ tsp of poultry seasoning
freshly chopped parsley
salt and pepper
PREPARATION
  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan and gently cook the mushrooms, onions and celery for around 5 minutes.
  2. Remove the pan from the heat and add the poultry seasoning and the salt and pepper. Stir evenly into the mushroom mixture.
  3. Transfer the ingredients to a large mixing bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, parsley and apples and mix together.
  4. Then, add the remaining liquid ingredients and mix altogether to form the stuffing mixture.
  5. Use immediately to stuff your chosen bird.


***

TRUSSING

Trussing is optional and not essential, although a trussed bird is easier to carve. Besides, a trussed bird has a nicer and much more presentable appearance.

Occasionally, with trussing, you may find that the whiter meat of the bird cooks more quickly than the darker parts, such as the inner thigh. This will result in the whiter meat being done, whilst the darker meat has yet to finish cooking. This is because the heat does not reach the innermost part of the bird as quickly.

You should never stop cooking the bird until the inner thigh has reached a temperature of 180°F (82°C), as this could result in food poisoning due to consuming uncooked meat.

A meat thermometer can be used to check the temperature and should be inserted into the thigh of the bird, ensuring that the thermometer does not touch the bone, just before placing the bird into the oven.

If the bird needs more time in the oven in order to fully cook the darker parts of meat, there is a possibility that the white meat will start to dry out, if it is already cooked.

In addition, to make carving easier, the wishbone can be removed by cutting it out with a sharp narrow-bladed knife, before you are ready to truss the bird, although again, this is entirely optional.

To remove the wishbone, run your fingers along the breast until you find the bone. Then, using the knife, cut along the top edge and along both sides of the wishbone. Gently hold the wishbone with your fingers and pull it free from the bird.

Trussing an unstuffed bird

  1. Remove the bird from its packaging. If giblets are available, remove them (they will be wrapped separately and placed in the body cavity) and set them aside to make gravy. Thoroughly wash the bird inside and out under a running tap. Pat dry with paper towels.
  2. Place the bird breast side down on a clean surface.
  3. Pull the skin of the neck flap and fold it over the neck opening. Any excess skin can be secured with a wooden pick if necessary.
  4. Turn the bird over, so that the breast is facing upwards and pull the tips of the wings up, over the neck skin towards the back. Tuck them underneath the bird, securing them firmly behind the shoulder. The wings should be tied with string so that they are held close to the body.
  5. When securing the legs, press them firmly into the breast, tucking any excess skin between the legs and the breast.
  6. Cross the ends of the drumsticks together, drawing the legs tight and tie several loops of string around the drumstick ends.
  7. Knot the string and trim of any unwanted measures.

Trussing a stuffed bird

  1. After the bird has been cleaned, fold the wing tips back as above.
  2. Stuff the neck cavity and fold the neck skin flap over so that it covers the neck opening. Secure it using a skewer.
  3. Fold the wing tips over and secure them behind the shoulder, tucking them neatly under the bird in doing so.
  4. Fill the body cavity loosely with stuffing and then tie the legs and drumsticks as previously described above, making sure that the parson's nose is tied in.
An alternative method is to close the body cavity by using two or more skewers. The skewers should be inserted across the cavity opening and threaded through the skin several times. Then, the skewers should be tied together as firmly as possible with string. Finally, the drumsticks must be tied together over the skewers.

The final method is to use a special trussing needle, which is like a long sewing needle, but used to truss meat. This is normally used with fine cotton string.
  1. Fold the skin of the neck flap over the neck hole; bring the wings back and under the bird, so that they hold the neck flap in place.
  2. Bring the legs into the body of the bird.
  3. Insert the threaded needle into one wing; pass it through the whole body and out the other side.
  4. Then insert the needle again, this time in the opposite direction, lengthways down the body of the bird, at the open ends.
  5. Sew the cotton through the parson's nose.
  6. Finally tie the drumsticks together with string.
The bird is now ready to be seasoned and placed in the oven to roast.

***


Roasting a chicken

Roasting a chicken does not take quite so long as roasting a turkey, however a large chicken could still take over 2 hours to roast.

As a general rule, calculate a cooking time of 20 minutes per pound of meat plus an additional 10 - 20 minutes at a temperature of 375ºF (190ºC).

Some people prefer to set the oven temperature to 450ºF (230ºC) and roast the bird at this high temperature for the first 10 - 15 minutes or the last 10 - 15 minutes. The rest of the time the chicken should be roasted at 375ºF (190ºC).

The surge of heat will result in a really crispy and brown skin and deliciously succulent meat.

The table below is a guideline for roasting times for a chicken at 375ºF (190ºC).


Chicken Roasting times (un-stuffed)
metric imperial time
1KG - 1½KG 2½ - 3 lbs 1 - 1¾ hrs
1½ - 2KG 3½ - 4 lbs 1½ - 1¾ hrs
2KG - 2½KG 4½ - 5 lbs 1½ - 2 hrs
2½ - 3KG 5 - 6 lbs 1¾ - 2½ hrs

Chicken Roasting times (stuffed)
metric imperial time
1KG - 1½KG 2½ - 3 lbs 1½ - 2 hrs
1½ - 2KG 3½ - 4 lbs 1¾ - 2¼ hrs
2KG - 2½KG 4½ - 5 lbs 2 - 2½ hrs
2½ - 3KG 5 - 6 lbs 2¼ - 2¾ hrs


***

Chicken and Vegetables

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                        vegan and vegetarian download the recipe here

2 chicken breast, skin on
1 tbsp olive oil
200g new potato, thinly sliced
500ml chicken stock
200g pack of mixed spring vegetables (broccoli, peas, broad beans and sliced courgette)
2 tbsp crème fraîche
handful tarragon

    PREPARATION

Fry the chicken in the oil in a wide pan for 5 mins on each side. Throw in the potatoes and stir to coat. Pour over the chicken stock, cover and simmer for 10 mins until the potatoes are almost cooked through.

Remove the lid and turn the heat to high. Boil the stock down until it just coats the bottom of the pan. Scatter the vegetables into the pan, cover again and cook the veg for about 3 mins.

Stir in the crème fraîche to make a creamy sauce, season with pepper and salt, if you want, then add the tarragon. Serve straight from the pan.







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