For the past couple of weeks we have had a ‘cold curse’ on this house. All residents but myself have had viral colds backed up by more viral colds! We have most certainly made a contribution to the Kleenex corporation and are thinking about taking out shares in Panadol. Well yesterday the ‘stand in chef’, who never gets sick, declared all out war on these viruses as I found him googling ‘boosting my immune system’. So we both made a pact to get some more sleep, blow out the double ended candle that can sometime burn bright and up our intake of vitamins and minerals (not the pill variety). Now whilst I have not been sick, I too am suffering from everyone else’s broken sleep and mucous laden snoring (mucous – sorry, not a word that should be mentioned on a food blog).
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So with all this in mind, this recipe jumped up in my head. I came across this recipe in Karen Fischer’s book, The healthy skin diet, but have not made it for some time. It is a healthy and vitamin rich take on Apricot chicken.
Apricots have always held a special place in my culinary heart. I love them in every way shape and form. I love their sweetness with its faint tangy kick. Whilst in a fresh form the are full of vitamin c, beta-carotene and fibre, this recipe uses canned apricots so they are really only being used for their natural sweetness and flavour. The immunity kick comes from the fresh carrots, capsicum, ginger, turmeric and garlic that form most of this dish. But surely it’s sweetness will be a draw card for the kids and make them gobble up all the antioxidants and vitamins A and C that this recipe promises.
First thing that needs to be done is create a spice mix to coat the chicken thigh pieces in. I mixed turmeric, ground ginger and Cajun seasoning together. Despite Cajun seasoning being labeled ‘hot’ I don’t find the amount in the whole dish is detectable and Master 5 did not mention that he found it hot. But, if you don’t want to risk it, leaving it out.
Coat the chicken pieces and brown it off in a heavy based, oven proof pot.
Set this aside and get started on the apricot sauce. In a food processor I blitz together the tinned apricots (minus about 8 apricot halves – leave these aside to add to the dish at the end), ginger, garlic, corn flour and vegetable or chicken stock
Set this aside and slice onion, carrots and capsicum. Start sautéing these in the same pot and return the chicken pieces and apricot sauce.
Place the pot in a 250 degree Celsius oven for 10 minutes then reduce to 200 deg Celsius for further 30 minutes. At this stage, I add the remaining apricots and return to oven for another 10 minutes
Cook some rice and your done.
Good luck, i hope you enjoy it like ‘three’ of us did.
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cajun seasoning
600g skinless chicken thigh fillets, cut into large pieces
1 x 825g tinned apricot halves in natural juice
1 tsp of grated ginger
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 tbs cornflour
1 vegetable or chicken stock cube
1 large onion sliced
2 carrots, sliced
1 red capsicum sliced or chunky cubes
Preheat oven to 250 deg celsius. Mix turmeric, ground ginger and cajun seasoning and coat chicken pieces with it. In a heavy based cast iron pot or frypan, brown chicken pieces in a little olive oil. Remove chicken from pot and set aside. Open can of apricots. Remove and set aside 8 halves. Puree the remainder of the apricot halves and juice with the fresh ginger, garlic and cornflour. Dissolve stock cube with 1/4 cup of boiling water and mix into the apricot puree.
Add a little more olive oil to the pan and saute off onion, carrot and capsicum. Return chicken and apricot puree. Cover with lid and place in hot oven for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 200 deg celsius and cook for a further 30 minutes. After this time, remove pot from oven and add in extra apricot halves. Cook for a further 5 – 10 minutes. Serve on a bed or rice.