Korean Chicken and Potato Stew

Well it’s been a long old pause over here, hasn’t it? Somehow over winter I went into full-on hibernation mode and lost my way a bit with cooking and writing. Then daylight savings time ended and suddenly all I wanted to do was get back into the kitchen, flip through my recipe books and eat, eat, eat.

I’ve loved Gizzi Erskine’s A Healthy Appetite since I bought it, but well over a year later I am still cooking new things from it, and am still yet to have a bad recipe from it’s pages. This Korean chicken and potato stew is the latest success, and even though I swapped a few things around based on the original recipe, it worked perfectly. It’s an ideal spring supper: packed full of flavour but warming from all the chilli and spice on evenings that aren’t quite balmy just yet.

The only thing you really do need to make it authentic is gochujang – a little big sweet, definitely spicy, slightly funky Korean chilli sauce. I located some in our local Morrisons so I don’t think it’s that hard to track down (Waitrose also have a version in their Cooks’ Ingredients range). Apart from that, it’s just a straightforward chicken stew: but a whole lot better than the name might suggest.

Korean Chicken and Potato Stew, adapted from Gizzi Erkine's A Healthy Appetite

Yield: Serves 3

Korean Chicken and Potato Stew, adapted from Gizzi Erkine's A Healthy Appetite

Ingredients

  • 6-8 chicken thighs, skin on
  • 1 onion, halved
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 3cm ginger
  • 300g baby potatoes, halved
  • 2 tbsp gochujang
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp hot chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • 200g green beans, halved
  • 4 spring onions, each chopped into three

Instructions

  • Start by taking one half of the onion, and blitzing together in a mini blender with the ginger, garlic and a splash of water to create a smooth puree. Season the chicken thighs and then brown over a high heat until the skin is golden brown. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  • Take the other onion half, roughly quarter, and add to the pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes until starting to blacken and remove from the heat. Pour in the puree, turn down to medium and let it cook until golden brown and fragrant. Use the liquid in the puree to scrap up all the chicken fond that sticks to the bottom. Once it's turned golden, return the chicken thighs to the pan, and nestle the potatoes all around.
  • Pour over the gochujang, soy, chilli, vinegar, puree and stock, and let it simmer over a medium-low heat for 35 minutes with a lid on. Once that time is up, add the green beans and spring onions, and cook for another 5 minutes with the lid off. The chicken should be falling off the bone and the potatoes tender.
  • Serve with fresh spring onion, sesame seeds and plenty of rice.
  • Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
    http://www.persephone-h.co.uk/2017/04/korean-chicken-potato-stew/

    Harissa Steak and Red Pepper Salad

    Steak salad with roasted red pepper dressing

    New year, new start, eh? Not quite with this steak and red pepper salad. We had this for lunch in the between Christmas and New Year lull when I realised we hadn’t had anything resembling a fruit or a vegetable for well over 24 hours, and it was probably time to try and get some goodness in our bodies.

    Having accidentally ventured into the Hawksmoor Spitalfields for lunch a few days before, this was a good alternative to the slightly sadder steak we had waiting at home for us in the fridge, since I think most at home steak sides will struggle to top their anchovy hollandaise and triple cooked chips. This easily stretches a 250g rump steak so it comfortably feeds two, although as with most salads, a few extra croutons tossed through wouldn’t go amiss either.

    The dressing is a nice element too in the salad – you use natural yoghurt (much like the lightened up chicken caesar of summers past) for extra creaminess and a little acidity to offset the sweetness of all those peppers. Not necessarily the healthiest start to the new year, but not the worst you could give yourself either.

    Harissa Steak and Red Pepper Salad

    Harissa Steak and Red Pepper Salad

    Ingredients

    • 2 red peppers, sliced thinly
    • 250g rump steak
    • 1 tsp harissa
    • Handul salad leaves
    • 100g natural yoghurt
    • Juice half a lemon

    Instructions

  • Heat the oven to at least 220C, and roast the red peppers in plenty of oil and garlic for 20 minutes until they are soft and starting to blacken around the edges. Put a handful of these in a blender with the natural yoghurt and lemon juice and blitz together to form the dressing.
  • For the steak, rub the harissa paste over both sides and season with salt and pepper, before cooking on a very hot pan until it's done until your liking. Let it rest for five minutes before slicing thickly. You can then assemble the salads with the leaves at the bottom, steak and red pepper slices tossed through, and the dressing drizzled over the top.
  • Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
    http://www.persephone-h.co.uk/2017/01/harissa-steak-and-red-pepper-salad/

    Freezer Chilli Con Carne

    Weeknight cooking would be a lot more painful for me if I didn’t rely quite so heavily on the freezer. I tend to run home three evenings a week so don’t get back until gone 7, by which point I am very close to hangry and in need of a quick dinner.

    Now I’ve learnt to keep loads of part-prepared bits in the freezer and it makes it much quicker to put together a meal as soon as I’m in the door. The spicy paste in this chilli con carne, for example, is best made in batch anyway, so it’s make sense to bag up individual portions for future meals. I do the same with thai curry paste too. I’ll also break down bigger packs of chicken thighs or beef mince so there are easy grab bags to defrost. Obviously this one is slightly dependant on remembering to remove said bag before you leave for work in the morning…

    For the chilli paste, I take dried casabels (six or so of these) and habaneros (one to two of these), and toast them over a high heat, before pouring in 200ml of stock and letting simmer for twenty minutes. Once cooled and blitzed together you should get three to four portions of paste which can then be frozen ahead of time, and easily rescued to spice up (quite literally) a mid week dinner.

    Freezer Chilli Con Carne

    Ingredients

    • Half an onion, finely sliced
    • 1 tsp marmite
    • 1 portion chilli paste, defrosted
    • 250g lean minced beef
    • Tin chopped tomatoes
    • Tin kidney beans

    Instructions

  • Start by frying the onion on a low heat until golden and fragrant. Tip in the marmite and chilli paste, stirring to coat everything well, before adding the meat and turning up the heat to let it brown. Once it is well browned, add in the tomatoes and kidney beans before letting it all simmer for 15 minutes. Even in this short time it will take on plenty of flavour and heat from the chilli paste, but you can always leave for longer if you can.
  • Serve with cauliflower rice, guacamole, soured cream and tomato salsa for a true tex-mex feast.
  • Recipe Management Powered by Zip Recipes Plugin
    http://www.persephone-h.co.uk/2016/09/freezer-chilli-con-carne/