Sunday, March 28, 2010

White and Dark Chocolate Jaffa Swirl Cake

I think I practically grew up on marble cake and love a good one at that. I don't often make it so when I happened to come across this particular recipe from a borrowed library book, I knew I had to get my ingredients out. The thought of adding white chocolate and dark chocolate into a cake batter sounded so tempting. This was definitely a double dose of chocolate fix and if you love cakes of this sort, who in the right mind could say no!

I would usually half most of my recipes especially if what I'm baking is for the first time. However this time I went ahead with a full size cake simply because it called for a bundt pan. If I had a smaller size pan, I probably would have halfed it but no regrets though. The cake came out deliciously moist and flavourful. I could taste the intensity of the chocolate with each and every bite. I took most of the cake to office and shared it around. It certainly got the thumbs up all around. Who says using a food processor can't give you a great cake. By the way if you are planning to get a cake/dessert book, I highly recommend Mix & Bake by Belinda Jeffrey . It has some really great recipes which I have already tried out and will post at a later stage.

White and Dark Chocolate Jaffa Swirl Cake
Recipe from “Mix and Bake” by Belinda Jeffery
Serves 12 – 16


55g good quality white chocolate
55g good quality dark chocolate
290g unsalted butter, chopped at room temperature
2 ½ cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
½ tsp salt
4 eggs
1 ½ cups castor sugar
1 cup buttermilk *
1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
3 tsp finely grated orange zest
Chocolate ganache for topping

* If you don’t have buttermilk, use 1 cup full cream milk and add in 1 Tbsp of vinegar or lemon juice. Leave stand for 15 minutes before using it.


1) Preheat oven to 180C. Butter and flour a bundt cake pan.

2) Put the white chocolate and dark chocolate in separate microwave-proof bowls. Pour 20g of butter into each of the bowl. Microwave at intervals of 15 seconds until the chocolate is melted. Remove from microwave and stir the chocolate and butter together until mixed. Set the bowls aside to cool.

3) Put the flour, baking powder, soda and salt in a bowl. Use a whisk to mix well.

4) Add the eggs and sugar into a food processor and whiz for 1 minute. Add the remaining butter chunks into the egg mixture and process for another minute.

5) Pour in the buttermilk and vanilla extract, and process for 15 seconds.

6) Pour in the flour mixture and blend it with a few quick pulses. Scrap the bowl at least once in between pulses to make sure that the mixture is fully blended.

7) Transfer the batter equally into 2 bowls.

8) In 1 bowl add in the melted dark chocolate and using a spatula, mix to incorporate together.

9) In the 2nd bowl, add the melted white chocolate, zest and using a spatula, mix to incorporate together.

10) Pour half of the white chocolate batter into the bundt, top it with the half of the dark chocolate batter.

11) Finish it off with another layer of white chocolate batter and top it with the remaining half of the dark chocolate batter.

12) Using a thin sharp knife, run it through the batter in a petal or figure 8 motion. This will give it a swirl shape but don’t over-do it as the batters will then blend together.

13) Bake for about 45 – 50 minutes.

Chocolate Ganache:
(Makes 1 ¾ cups)


250g good quality chocolate, cut into small cubes
125g butter
50 ml water

1) Put chocolate, butter and water into a medium-sized saucepan over low heat. Let the chocolate and butter melt stirring the mixture frequently, until the ganache is smooth. Do not let the mixture get too hot and boil as it will turn grainy and oily.

2) Once it is silky smooth, take it off the heat. Let it cool until it’s barely warm and of a thick pouring consistency before using it.

3) Any left over can be stored into an airtight container, seal it tightly and leave in the fridge. When ready to use, gently warm it over very low heat, let it cool to the right consistency.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pickled Fish

I have not made this particular pickle for ever so long. So it was that I decided to make a few bottles to take home with me to Kuala Lumpur during the Chinese New Year. (Okay, this is an extremely, extremely belated post).

Pickles such as this is very common in Malaysian Nyonya households. My grandmother used to pickle onions and also stuff chillies with raw papaya strips. I love both these dishes and it is so hard to find this now. The commercially made versions somehow do not come up to par at all. As with most nyonya recipes, they tend to be a bit tedious to make but the end result is delicious. This pickle fish dish is best eaten after about a week to allow it's flavours to develop. However do not keep too long after that or else the taste of the vinegar mixture changes somewhat.

Pickled Fish
Recipe from "Traditional Malaysian Cuisine"


500g fillet of fish (eg mackeral), cut into 3" size
2 cm piece of fresh tumeric, sliced into 5 pieces
1/4 cup garlic cloves
150g fresh young ginger sliced finely
2 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
4 fresh red and green chillies, washed, sliced in half and dried in the sun (for about 2 hours. Then slice the chillies and set aside.
18 Tbsp sugar (adjust according to taste)
1/4 cup rice vinegar or white vinegar
1 cup vegetable oil


1) Heat the oil and fry the finely sliced giner until brown. Remove from oil and drain well.

2) Fry the garlic, drain and keep aside.

3) Using the same oil, fry the tumeric slices until the oil turns yellow and then remove. Strain the oil and leave it to cool.

4) Heat some oil and fry the fish until it is cooked. Leave to cool.

5) In a bowl mix the sugar and the vinegar together. Stir until the the sugar is dissolved. Set aside.

Prepare the Pickle:

1) In a dry jar sprinkle a layer of sesame. Top it with a layer of fried ginger, garlic and chillies.

2) Spread the fish slices on top. Add in a few Tbsp of the tumeric oil and vinegar/sugar mixture.

3) Repeat steps (1) and (2) until all the ingredients have been used.

4) Cover the jar tightly, place in the fridge and leave it for one week. Best consumed within a week after this.

5) Serve at room temperature as an accompaniment to steamed rice.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

This month's Cake Slice challenge is a Pineapple Upside-Down Cake. Would you believe that I have not made this particular cake before or even had a slice of it? So you could say that I am somewhat disadvantaged in terms of how the end result would look or taste like. This particular cake is usually baked in an iron skillet. Without possessing an iron skillet or any skillet, I had to bake this cake in a normal cake tin. As usual I halfed the recipe.

This recipe is relatively easy to put together. However I have to say that I was not pleased with the end result at all. Although some of my fellow bakers at Cake Slice enjoyed it, I personally did not. The cake did smelled heavenly whilst baking and even after coming out of the oven. However the cake crumb was extremely heavy and tasted a bit gummy as well. It was also a bit too sweet in my opinion even though I had reduced the amount of sugar used. I really hate to confess that I did not even bother have a slice of it and if I don't like it, it's not being served to my office colleagues. This is one recipe that really "bombed" out for me!

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
Recipe from "Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott"

Pineapple Topping:

One 20-ounce can pineapple rings, with their syrup or juice
56g cold butter
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
10 maraschino cherries

For the Cake:

1 1/2cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
56g unsalted butter, softened
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract


1) Preheat oven to 350F.

To make the topping:

1) Drain the pineapple well, reserving 2 tablespoons of the juice or syrup for the cake batter. Melt the cold butter in a 10 inch cast iron skillet over medium heat. Or, put the butter in a 9inch round cake pan and put it in the oven for a few minutes as the heat melts the butter.

2) Remove the pan from the oven or stove and sprinkle the brown sugar over the buttery surface. Place the pineapple rings carefully on top of the scattered brown sugar and melted butter, arranging them so they fit in 1 layer. (You may have a few left over). Place a cherry in the centre of each ring, and set the pan aside.

To make the cake:

1) In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Use a fork to mix them together well. Add the milk and butter and beat well with a mixer, scraping down the bowl once or twice until you have a thick, fairly smooth batter, about 1 to 2 minutes.

2) Add the egg, reserved pineapple syrup or juice and the vanilla. Beat for 2 minutes more, stopping once or twice to scrape down the sides.

3) Carefully pour the batter over the pineapple arranged in the skillet or cake pan and use a spoon to spread it evenly to the edges of the pan. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the cake is golden brown and springs back when touched lightly in the centre. Cool in the skillet or pan for 5 minutes on a wire rack.

4) With oven mitts, carefully turn out the warm cake onto a serving plate by placing the plate upside down over the cake in the pan and then flipping them over together to release the cake onto the plate. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Matcha Genoise with Azuki Cream Filing

Talk about a case of deviating from a recipe, this must be a classic case. I was suppose to make some green tea macarons with azuki beans as the filing. I'm not sure what happened but when I chanced upon this particular recipe from Anita Chu of Dessert First I knew in my heart that I had to make this cake. Anita is also a great pastry chef and author of two books - "Field Guide to Cookies" and "Field Guide to Candy".

The thought of layers upon layers of azuki cream filing won me over. So it was after work one evening that I took out my mixing bowls and hand mixer (I was too lazy to use my KitchenAid) and starting baking. Although the recipe looks complicated, it was really easy to put together. In fact I managed to bake the cake, plus the filing as well as assemble the entire cake in less than an hour an a half. One thing I must caution is that this recipe is enough for about 6 persons, without extra helping. And your guests are likely to ask for "more please" after tasting it. I'm already dreaming of endless possibilities with this recipe such as mango cream filing. Hmmm .... mangoes are now in season!

Matcha Genoise with Azuki Cream Filing
Recipe Adapted from Dessert First


2 eggs, room temperature
60g confectioners' sugar
63g ground almond or almond meal
1 1/2 tsp matcha powder
30g all purpose flour
2 egg whites, room temperature
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
28g caster sugar
30g unsalted butter, melted

Ingredients for Azuki Cream Filling:

1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup of prepared azuki beans (can version should be easily available from Asian or Japanese grocery. The beans are already cooked and sweetened - do not use paste version)

Method for the Genoise:

1) Preheat the oven to 400F. Line a half sheet pan (about 12"x16") with a sheet of parchment paper or a Silpat.

2) Combine the eggs with the confectioners' sugar and ground almonds in a mixer and cream until it is light and about double in volume.

3) Add in the matcha powder and combine. You can add more or less depending on your taste, but donâ€'t add more than 1 ½ tsp or it might affect the cake'€™s texture.

4) Remove from the mixer. Sift the flour over the egg mixture.

5) Whip the egg whites in a clean bowl on a mixer at low speed until they start to froth. Then add the cream of tartar and increase mixer speed, whipping until stiff peaks form. Add the sugar and whip for a few seconds longer to incorporate.

6) Scoop about 1/3 of the egg whites into the egg mixture and fold in gently with a rubber spatula. Add the remaining egg whites and fold in until uniformly mixed. Pour the melted butter over the batter and fold in to incorporate.

7) Pour the batter into the half sheet pan and distribute it evenly with an offset spatula, making the layer as level and smooth as possible. Tap the bottom of the pan to get rid of some of the air bubbles. (I didn't do this very well which resulted in "holes" in my genoise)

8) Bake in the oven for about 6 to 8 minutes, until the cake is just firm and lightly brown but not completely brown – this cake should not be overbaked.

9) Remove from the oven and run a knife around the edges of the cake to loosen it from the parchment. Leave to cool on a wire rack.

10)Place another sheet pan on top of the cake and flip it over, then carefully peel the parchment paper from the back of the cake. Then flip the cake back on it's right side over a clean piece of parchment.

To Assemble:

1) Trim off the edges and slice the cake in along the short side into 4 equal-sized pieces

2) Whip the cream to soft peaks. Leave aside 1/4 of the cream for the topping. For the remaining cream, fold in the red beans gently with a rubber spatula until they are evenly distributed.

3) Taking one layer of the cake, frost the top with 1/4 of the azuki filing. Then lay the 2nd layer on top and continue with the rest until the last layer is in place. It's ok if some of the cream goes over the sides; just try to keep the layer even.

4) Top the last layer with the 1/4 plain cream.

5) Cover the cake and refrigerate overnight.

6) When you are ready to serve, trim off the sides of the cake to make them nice and even. Dust the top with some matcha powder.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Risotto for a Daring Cooks Challenge

The 2010 March Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Eleanor of "MelbournefoodGeek and Jess of Jessthebaker . They chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make risotto. The various components of their challenge recipe are based on input from the Australian Masterchef cookbook and the cookbook Moorish by Greg Malouf.

We were required to make the stock for the risotto dish from scratch and I decided to make do with a simple chicken stock. Risotto is not something I have ever cooked before in my life and to be honest I have not eaten risotto before. The only one time I have ever cooked anything that somewhat resembles risotto would have been a seafood paela. It was delicious but not something I would make over and over again. To get into the mood for this challenge, I searched out recipes for risotto. I was amazed that you could make so many variations of this rice dish and it sort of confused me somewhat. I ended up toying with one idea, and then abandoning it for another. Oh dear, and time was ticking away. In fact I only decided on the final recipe mid week and made this dish only last night. This is really winging it as I don't like to rush things at the last minute. There is really no room for errors in this case and if this recipe really bombed out, that's it. However I am so glad that it worked out well. This recipe blends in flavours that we love which is Thai. I decided to make the risotto really dry and it ended up like a Chinese claypot version. I used some of the same ingredients to stir fry the prawns which was laid out as a side dish accompanying the risotto. My hubby really, and I mean really enjoyed this. Next time I will try it with green curry instead.

Thai Red Curry Prawn Risotto
Recipe Adapted from "Quick & Easy Workday Dinners"
Serves 3 - 4


400ml fresh chicken stock (recipe below)
2 pieces lemon grass (use the white part only), bruised
6 fresh kaffir lime leaves, shredded
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 medium sized red onion, finely chopped
4 Tbsp good quality Thai red curry paste
1 1/2 cups arborio or short-grained rice, washed and drain of water
200ml coconut cream + 4 Tbsp coconut cream extra
350g raw prawns, peeled and deveined with tails intact
250g raw prawns, peeled, deveined and chopped
3 bird's eye chilli
Fish sauce to taste


1) Pour the chicken stock into a saucepan, add the lemon grass and half the kaffir lime leaves. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, covered for 10 minutes.

2) Heat the oil in a deep pot (preferably non-stick) and add in the onion. Cook on medium-low heat for about 3 minutes. Stir in 2 1/2 Tbsp of the red curry paste and fry until fragrant (about 1 minute).

3) Then stir in the rice until it is well coated. Strain about 300ml of the stock into the rice and then add in 200ml of coconut cream. Add in the remaining lime leaf and simmer until the rice is cooked. If the rice looks a bit dry and is still uncooked, slowly add in the remaining chicken stock. The rice will continue absorbing the stock whilst it is being cooked.

4) Once the rice is cooked (test for doneness), add in the chopped shrimp and cover the pot for about a minute until the shrimp is cooked. Season with fish stock to taste.

5) For the remaining shrimp, mix 1 1/2 Tbsp of red curry and mix it with 4 Tbsp of coconut cream. Pour mixture into a frying pan and slowly fry it until fragrant. Add the whole shrimps, chilli and 2 shredded lime leaf. Stir fry until the shrimp is cooked. Season with fish sauce to taste.

6) Serve the risotto whilst hot and add the red curry shrimps on the side. Garnish with finely sliced lime leaves.

To Make the Chicken Stock (can be made a day or 2 beforehand)


3 kg of meaty chicken bones (backs, necks, breast bones), skin removed.
8 cups of cold water (or enough to cover chicken pieces)
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 stalks of celery, coarsely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, peeled
2 bay leaves
1" ginger, sliced
3 springs of coriander
1 tsp whole white peppercorns


1) In a large stockpot, combine all ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 3 hours (essentially, the longer you simmer it, the more intense the flavor), adding water as needed to keep ingredients submerged.

2) Strain stock into a clean pot or heatproof plastic container and discard solid ingredients. Let cool and refrigerate overnight.

3) In morning, skim solidified fat from the top and re-refrigerate until ready to use. Left over stock can be frozen.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Strawberry Meringue Tartletes

I simply love spring even we don't have the luxury of experiencing it here in Singapore. I love it because it's time to bake with seasonal fruits such as strawberries. It's also easy to gauge how far into spring we are now experiencing as the local markets are flooded with strawberries from Korea. It even gets cheaper by the week. Although Korean strawberries may not look as red and plump as what you would expect them to be, they are still delicious. A little trick I've learnt is to take the berries out of its plastic container and transfer them into a shallow bowl. Place the bowl on your kitchen counter top for a day or two (depending on the ripeness of the fruit when you first purchased them), and the berries will naturally ripen and deepen in colour. When I was young my mum would bury fruits such as mangoes in our rice bin and leave it there for a few days so that the fruit would ripen. I'm just guessing that the heat naturally ripens the fruit and believe me it did work!

So it was with two punnets of strawberries in my fridge I decided to make some tartletes for dessert. I was amazed at how easy this recipe is and they make such elegant individual servings after a dinner party. These tartletes do not keep well so it is best eaten the day they are assembled. However you can bake the tart shells a day beforehand, store them in a air-tight container, as well as the strawberry filing ahead of time. Then you just need finish off with the rest of the recipe on the day you intend to serve them out.

Strawberry Meringue Tartletes
Recipe Adapted from "Fresh with Anna Olson"
Yield: Six 3 1/2" tartletes

Print Recipe


For the Crust:

1-1/4 cup all purpose flour, sifted
1-1/2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tablespoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1" cubes and chilled
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
2-3 tbsp cold water

For the Filling:

3 cups quartered ripe strawberries
1/2 cup sugar (sugar has been reduced from original recipe)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp water
3 tablespoons cornstarch

For the Meringue:

5 large egg whites
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar (sugar has been reduced from original recipe)
1 teaspoon cornstarch (the cornstarch helps to stablize the egg white and prevent it from separating)


For the Crust:

1) For the crust, add flour, sugar and salt into a food processor and pulse a couple of times to mix together. Add in the chilled butter cubes and pulse together until the mixture resembles a rough crumbly texture. Whisk egg yolks with vinegar and 3 Tbsp of cold water in a bowl. Drizzle the egg mixture into the dough, with the processor on and pulse until the mixture comes together (this should be less than a minute). If dough does not work itself together, add another 1/2 Tbsp water. Shape dough into a log, wrap in plastic and chill.

2) Divide dough into 6 equal pieces. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each piece of dough to just under 1/4-inch thick and line six 3 ½-inch tart shells. Trim tart shells and chill 30 minutes to 1 hour.

3) Preheat oven to 350°F. Place tart shells on a baking tray and dock bottoms with a fork. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until bottoms appear dry and edges brown just lightly. Let cool.

For the Filling:

1) For filling, stir strawberries with sugar, lemon juice and 1/2 cup water. Let sit for 20 minutes. Strain away liquid into a small pot. Bring liquid up to a simmer. Stir cornstarch with remaining 2 tablespoons water and whisk into simmering liquid. Stir until thickened to a consistency almost like jam, then remove from heat to cool. Once cooled, stir in the strawberries (remove any access liquid from the berries) into the jam and spoon into baked tart shells. Chill while preparing meringue.

For the Meringue:

1) For meringue, preheat oven to 400°F. Whip egg whites with lemon juice on one speed lower than high and gradually add sugar while whipping to stiff peaks. Stir in cornstarch and pipe or dollop over strawberry filling. Bake for 2 to 3 minutes until browned then cool and chill until ready to serve.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Tomato and Tuna Pasta Salad

We have been getting a heat wave here in Singapore since end of January. The temperature is now reaching 35C with humidity in the mid 90s. In the evenings it drops down to about 26C which is still warm in my books. Local weather forecast reported that we had the least rainfall over the last 12 months. They have even advised citizens to ration water and take quick showers. Everyone seem to be flocking to get some relief either in air-conditioned shopping malls or to the swimming pools.

Over the last couple of weeks I have not baked much as I don't think any frosting can withstand this type of weather. I don't even dare to think of making anything with fondant as I am sure it'll just end up as one big mess! These few days I can only think of meals that are quick to prepare and a pasta salad seems ideal. This particular recipe is no-fuss, easy and can be made way beforehand. It can be served either warm, at room temperature and even cold from the fridge.

Tomato and Tuna Pasta Salad
Recipe Adapted from "Donna Hay's Summer Cool"
Serves 4

Print Recipe


400g spaghettini
1 medium-sized can tuna chunks in brine
250g cherry tomatoes, halved
250g teardrop tomatoes, halved
200g green beans (french beans), blanched and sliced
1 1/2 loosely packed cup of mixed salad leaves (arugula, rocket, radicchio, spinach)
1 clove garlic, crushed and minced finely
1/4 lemon juice
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil (add more if required)
Salt and cracked black pepper to taste


1) Cook the pasta in a saucepan of salted boiling water for 10-12 minutes or ntil al dente. Drain, refresh under cold water and set aside.

2) Break the tuna chunks into smaller pieces.

3) In a large mixing bowl, add the cooled pasta, tuna chunks, tomato, beans and mxed salad.

4) Add the minced garlic, lemon juice, zest, white wine vinegar and olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Toss to combine. Add more olive oil if required.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Blueberry Butter Cake

This cake was actually done on the spurr of a moment. I had the urge to bake something ... anything in fact and also wanted to free up some freezer space which is really jam pack with food stuff and frozen fruit. I was thinking a cake wtih fruit would be a good way to use up a few punnets of blueberries which I had lying around. So after shuffling through a few cook books, I decided to attempt this particular recipe from an Australian chef that I really like. I've made a few of Bill Grainger's recipes before which have been posted in this blog. And have I mentioned that I love watching his cook show - sadly they don't air it here any more. Any way this is a butter cake and with all butter cakes, the crumbs tend to be a bit dense but the best part is the crumble topping which is simply delicious. You probably can substitute the blueberries with apples, pears or any other fruit.

Blueberry Butter Cake
Makes a 9" cake - serves 8
Recipe from "Bills Sydney Food" by Bill Grainger

For the Topping:

1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose plain flour
75g cold unsalted butter

For the Cake:

2 cups all-purpose plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
125g unsalted butter, softened
1 cup fine caster sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup sour cream
2 cups blueberries

Method for the topping:

1) Place brown sugar and flour in a bowl, add butter and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.

Method for the cake:

1) Preheat oven to 180C or 350F.

2) Sift flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl. Place butter and sugar in a bowl and crean until light and fluffy.

3) Add the eggs and mix until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients, alternating with sour cream, mixing well after each addition.

4) Pour the cake batter into a greased 9" spring form cake tin. Sprinkle with blueberries and topping mixture.

5) Bake the cake for 50 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 mins, then turn out onto a wire rack, top side up.

6) Serve warm or at room temperature with fresh cream. This cake is best eaten on same day or else the topping gets soft.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Provencale Garlic Chicken

There is really nothing like a roast chicken for a Sunday lunch or dinner. It's simple, flavourful and everyone can enjoy it at the same time. Maybe that's why it's often called "a Sunday roast". Once marinated, the whole chicken gets popped into the oven. You get to do your own thing around the house or even run some errands. Once the roast is done, just carve it up and serve out for a great meal. I love recipes such as this ... so simple! And heh it's minimal cleaning up as well.

This particular roast is the ultimate garlic dish, based on the classic chicken with 40 cloves of garlic. If you are not a fan of garlic, I would surely advise you to stay far, far away. This roast is great as a meal on it's own, serve it up with a side of green salad and any left overs can be used as a sandwich filing.

Provencale Garlic Chicken
Recipe Adapted from "Good Baking - The New Basics" by Jill Dupleix
Serves 4


1 medium sized chicken
Sea salt and black pepper
2 dried bay leaves
5 - 6 springs of thyme
1/4 cup olive oil
40 plump whole garlic cloves unpeeled
10 small potatoes or 5 large ones, cut in half, unpeeled
1/4 cup dry white wine


1) Preheat oven to 350F.

2) Rub chicken with a little salt, pop the bay leaves and 2 thyme sprigs inside, and truss with string.

3) Place in a lightly oiled, large, lidded casserole and add the garlic cloves, potatoes, and white wine. Drizzle the olive oil over the chicken scatter a few thyme sprigs on the top. Season well with sea salt and pepper.

4) Lay a sheet of foil across the casserole, clamp the lid on tightly and pot roast for 1 1/4 hours. Remove the lid and increase the heat to 425F. Roast until the skin is golden and the chicken is cooked through, about 10 to 15 minutes longer. (I did not have a casserole pot so I used a normal roasting pan and used 3 layers of foil to cover the chicken. Make sure that the foil is tightly wrapped around the sides of the roasting pan)

5) Gently transfer the chicken to a serving platter, remove the string and carve. Pile the garlic cloves on top of the chicken and serve with the potatoes and cooking juices. Squish the garlic and eat the sweet, nutty puree with the chicken.

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