Sunday, July 28, 2013

Roasted Chicken and Asparagus with Rice Pilaf

It's a beautiful Sunday and I was thinking of cooking something simple but yet tasty for lunch. Thankfully we had a light breakfast and could palate this dish.

I really like Curtis Stone's 'What's for dinner?' and this book divides recipes into different days where you would probably be having busy schedules in the early part of the week. And yes, although it's a Sunday, I still chose from his Five Ingredient Fridays' recipes. That gives me the flexibility of making something simple and doesn't turn me off cooking which heavy cooking does at times.

This recipe is such a classic roast chicken that you can bake in the oven without much looking after and better yet, it uses chicken legs which is even easier than using a whole chicken. With the chicken roasting away, you allow the asparagus to cook together with it to pick up some of its awesome rustic flavour with a shallot-flavoured pilaf. There is your complete meal. Although Curtis uses brussels sprouts, I replace it with asparagus since I never liked brussels sprouts. So if you are a fan of it, do use that instead.

This recipe is for 4 pax, cooking time is 40 minutes and prep time is about 10 minutes. My modifications are in blue.


4 whole chicken legs (fats all removed but leave the skin on)
1/4 cup olive oil I used canola oil
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 pound brussel sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise I used 1 packet of baby asparagus
1 packet of baby portobello mushrooms (sliced into 4 slices each)
6 shallots: 4 halved, 2 finely chopped
1 1/4 cups long-grain white rice
1 3/4 cups sodium-reduced chicken broth

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 F. I preheated mine to 180 degrees celsius.
  2. Place the chicken legs on a large heavy rimmed baking sheet. I put mine on my oven baking sheets. Coat with 1 tbsp olive canola oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, or until beginning to brown.
  3. In a medium bowl, toss the brussels sprouts baby asparagus, sliced baby portobello mushrooms and halved shallots with 1 tbsp olive canola oil and scatter them around the chicken. Continue roasting the chicken with the vegetables for about 20 minutes longer, or until the chicken shows no sign of pinkness when pierced at the bone with the tip of a small sharp knife and the brussels sprouts baby asparagus are golden brown and tender but not mushy.
  4. Meanwhile, heat a medium heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the remaining 2 tbsp olive canola oil, then add the chopped shallots and cook, stirring occasionally for about 2 minutes or until tender. Add the rice and stir to coat with the olive oil. Stir in the broth, 1/2 tsp salt and 1/8 tsp pepper and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, cover the pan tightly and simmer gently for about 18 minutes or until the rice is tender and the liquid has been absorbed. Uncover the rice and fluff it with a fork. Cover and let stand off the heat for 5 minutes.
  5. Divide the rice, chicken and vegetables amongst four dinner plates. Drizzle with the pan juices and serve.

Mr G was quite delighted to try something new and he did comment it's an 'angmoh' version of chicken rice. Hahaha that is interesting. It could be the chicken broth that was cooked with the rice to give it that flavour. For me, I felt it's quite clean and refreshing without much marination of that sorts and the fresh chicken leg together with the asparagus, shallots and mushrooms did blend well together to give a nice healthy lunch. I will definitely try this again. The only cooking done was just the rice over the stove which is pretty different from how we Chinese usually cook our rice in the rice cooker or if we do, it'll be just for claypot rice.

Wanna cook or bake like Curtis Stone? To join, simply cook or bake any recipe from Curtis Stone's website, his recipe collection at Coles website or at Masterchef Australia or his cookbooks and blog hop with us for the whole month of July 2013. For more details, please see this.

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Also, I'm going to submit this post to Cook-Your-Books #2 by Joyce from Kitchen Flavours.


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