Like all good chocoholics, I think Easter is a wonderful time of year. Yes I know there are religious implications, but the sight and smell of chocolate everywhere makes it difficult to think of anything else. For me, it really doesn’t matter how old the Munchkins get (they are both adults now) – the Easter Bunny still comes to my house, mostly because it is fun for me. Of course everyone else plays along, because THERE IS CHOCOLATE!
But I do attempt to respect some Easter traditions, and steer clear of red meat on Good Friday. I really don’t like fish, so unless we want to go vegetarian, our choices are limited. Maybe we will have some easy chicken and corn soup for lunch? At my local farmers’s market, I have found the most divine lemongrass paste, with just a hint of chilli. I use that as a flavour base, add some home made stock (I gather up all my vegetable peels in a plastic bag in the fridge, throw in all those herb stalks and a bit of salt, and simmer it all for about half an hour), some chopped cooked chicken (or if there isn’t any leftover, some chicken mince) and a can of creamed corn. Delicious.
For dinner we will have KounterFeit Chicken. The flavourful coating is a take off of a popular take away chain (I wonder which one?) But it can be made with Gluten Free flour, so Himself gets to eat it, and he loves it. Everyone loves it. Since I discovered this recipe, I have to serve it once a week, or there will be a mutiny! My measurements aren’t exact, it all depends on the size of the chicken breasts, you might have to start with one quantity of coating and make up more if you need it:
KounterFeit Chicken (serves 4):
Total time including cooking – approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.
Four large chicken breasts;
3- 4 tablespoons GF plain flour;
Half teaspoon of salt;
Three quarters teaspoon of pepper (not freshly cracked – just the ground table variety is best here);
Two teaspoons of paprika (I prefer the sweet, but you can use hot if you like it);
One tablespoon of Masterfoods All Purpose Seasoning (the ingredients list does not show any gluten, but it is not declared to be gluten free).
Cut the chicken into lengths about as long as your index finger, but thicker, place in a bowl of milk and soak for 20 minutes. Mix the dry ingredients and coat each piece of chicken. I prefer to put the dry ingredients into a bag, and taking chicken from the milk with tongs, put a few pieces of chicken into the bag and mash them around. When Himself does this part for me, he prefers to take the chicken out of the milk one piece at a time, and roll them around in a bowl of mixture. It’s not a batter, just a flour dredge that will stick to the milky chicken. Pour a good quantity of olive oil into a baking dish, roll the chicken to coat and give the top layer a shot of olive oil spray. Bake in a fan forced oven at 180 degrees for up to 45 minutes (depending on your oven and how thick the chicken pieces are – careful not to overcook the chicken or it will dry out). I check mine after about 25 minutes, turning them and checking on their progress, and adjust the cooking time if necessary.
Serve with whatever you like.
Just in case we get visitors, I might throw together a cheese log. If you don’t put the sauce on, it will keep a day or two in the fridge, so you can keep it on hand to serve with crackers.
Total preparation time about 10 minutes.
250g packet Philadelphia Cream Cheese;
1 tablespoon each sesame seeds, cracked black pepper, and poppy seeds;
Drizzle of sweet chilli sauce.
Roll the cheese into a log shape. I find it easier to leave it in the foil at this point for the initial squashing and reshaping, and take it out just to neaten it off. Combine the dry ingredients in a shallow dish, and coat the log all over. Place on a serving dish, and drizzle with chilli sauce when ready to serve. You will need a small knife for service, as it is not soft enough for dipping.
Now, time to get back to looking at some of those yummy chocolate recipes, and imagine myself making some……