It hasn't all been bad though. This month's Delicious. magazine had some fantastic recipes in it. The first that I wanted to make was Rachel Allen's Slow-roasted Ginger & Citrus Shoulder of Pork. The recipe is a sweet citrusy marinade with ground star anise in there. It is marinaded overnight and then roasted for 12 hours. Instead of a bone-in shoulder, I used boneless and cooked for 10 hours. The flavour was fabulous but it was over cooked. Next time I would probably reduce the temperature further and probably reduce the cooking time a bit more. The crackling didn't crackly but I never seem to have any luck with crackling if the skin has been marinaded. It was find the way it was though.
From this issue I also made David Prior's Five-spice Chicken & Cucumber Banh Mi. I followed the recipe almost exactly. The only thing I did differently was to marinade the chicken overnight, oh and I pan fried rather than grilled the chicken. This meal was so wonderful. Just perfect for a special lunch time meal. There was so much flavour in the chicken and it all combined perfectly. Don't skimp on the mayonnaise though. I used Neil Perry's mayo, my go to for bought mayonnaise now. I highly recommend this. It is easy to make. It is flavoursome just a little bit fancy. Oh and the left over chicken meat was fabulous in salads.
Five-spice chicken & cucumber banh mi
- 3/4 cup (165g) caster sugar
- 3/4 cup (185ml) white vinegar
- 3 carrots, cut into thin matchsticks or grated
- 900g skinless chicken thigh fillets
- 1/2 cup (150g) whole-egg mayonnaise
- 2 baguettes, cut into thirds, split
- 2 long red chillies, seeds removed, cut into thin strips
- 1 telegraph cucumber, thinly sliced into ribbons
- 1/2 red onion, very thinly sliced
- Baby rocket, or other salad greens
- 1/4 cup (60ml) soy sauce
- 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 4 eschalots, finely chopped
- 2 tbs fish sauce
- 1 tbs caster sugar
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp five-spice powder
- Combine sugar, vinegar and 1/2 tsp salt in a bowl, stirring until sugar and salt dissolve. Add carrots and toss to coat. Stand at room temperature for at least 2 hours or overnight. Drain.
- Combine all the marinade ingredients together in a large bow. Add chicken, turning to coat. Cover and marinate in the fridge for 1 1/2 hours or overnight.
- Preheat frying pan to medium-high. Remove chicken from marinade and pan-fry, in batches, for 6-8 minutes, turning, until cooked through. Slice on an angle and keep warm.
- Spread mayonnaise on bottom half of baguettes, then fill with carrot, chilli, cucumber, chicken, onion and rocket. Serve immediately.