Tuesday, August 2, 2011

An Ottolenghi - Inspired Night

When I lived in England, I used to walk by the window of Yotam Ottolenghi's shop in Kensington and drool at the food. I coveted the beautiful salads and lusted after a slice of the perfect rare beef. Every now and then I would treat myself to a minuscule amount of his delectable dishes - I bought two small slices of beef one day (which cost me about 10 quid, but it was well worth it). Being back in the states I get roving cravings for Ottolenghi's food and he very kindly accommodates me by posting some lovely recipes both on his website and in his column for the Guardian.

I decided to make an entire Ottolenghi meal beginning with his recipe for Crushed New Potatoes with Horseradish and Sorrel. You can view his blog for the complete recipe. I changed a few things:  I used baby yukon golds instead of new potatoes. I used slightly less olive oil and, instead of fresh horseradish, I used prepared horseradish (and probably dumped in a bit extra just because I love it so much). I finished my tweaked version off with watercress (a much bigger cress than called for) and pea shoots, which added a nice little crunch.

 For my protein I made a chicken dish which, conveniently, called for spring onions as well! - I bought too many spring onions and was on a mission to find uses for them. The recipe for Roast Chicken with Chili and Basil was supremely simple which made it an instant winner and the end result did not disappoint (although I will say that my end product looked different from Ottolenghi's). To make: I combined 1 tablespoon canola oil, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1.5 tablespoons Dijon, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon rice vinegar and a teaspoon of red chili flakes. Once whisked together, I poured the marinade over 3 chicken legs (which I had seasoned). To finish I tossed in three sliced spring onions and 3 serrano chilis, whole.

 Once the chicken had marinated for about 6 hours I baked it in a 400 degree oven for about 30-35 minutes. I garnished the final product with the cooked chilis and some fresh basil. The chicken was moist and delicious - it was definitely feast-worthy, if not diet.

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