Wednesday, 6 June 2012
Recipes on the road - Motor home chicken with lemon, thyme and garlic
Phill has acquired a motor home and whilst the appeal of the road opening up in front of us and travelling into the sunset has a romantic appeal, and stirs a little something in this particular trucker's daughter, the slumming it of some aspects of 'camping' does not. Confined spaces, temperamental showers and traffic queues are some of the things that irritate me, but the things I can affect, I will, and that is the food.
Early camping adventures and a lack of interest in cooking meant that the one ring I had to make good with led to an amazing level of consumption of hot dogs, but armed with a little more culinary skill and not one, but three rings and an oven means that dinner out of tins will be seldom this time around.
Our first adventure with the motor home was to France, Belgium and Luxembourg, and whilst there are many reasons to love, and then be irritated with, France, one of the things I adore is after landing in Calais is making my way to the Carrefour or the Auchan and stocking up on French food, and whilst I know that the food they sell is not really a patch on the fresh produce you can acquire at the market in France, it is still superior to a lot of the stuff you can buy on our side of the channel, so with that in mind I stocked up on chicken, veal (hard to get in the UK really) and other niceties to lengthy to mention here.
Chicken. I bought chicken legs, which were reasonably priced and reassuringly tinged with yellow and had a notion that I would marinate them in thyme, garlic and lemon then roast them off. The oven, not being furnace like and therefore giving a longer cooking time, would result in the meat coming away easily from the bones. The quality of the chicken meant the end result was tasty, succulent and gorgeous. I made the marinade in the morning and coated the chicken legs with it, rubbing it into the skin and then covering and putting in the fridge, taking it out and turning the meat over when I remembered. Then it was just a case of placing on an oven tray and letting the oven do it's thing. Marginally more effort than opening a tin of hot dogs, but not much.
I served this with potatoes and salad. Lola, Finn and Phill served me clean plates. First motor home meal = success!
Chicken Legs with Lemon, Thyme and Garlic
Served Lola, Finn, Mum and Dad
3 - 4 chicken legs, depending on size.
50ml olive oil
2 fat cloves of garlic
1 large lemon, some of the pith removed with a peeler, plus the juice
2 tsp dried thyme
plenty of salt and pepper (I used a tsp of salt and half a tsp of black pepper)
Mix all the ingredients for the marinade in a suitable bowl or container.
Place the chicken into the marinade. You might like to slash the flesh of the chicken to allow the flavours to penetrate further. Rub the marinade over the chicken.
Cover the chicken and marinade, either with a lid or with cling film. Place in the fridge. Leave for at least a couple of hours but if you can leave it for about 8 hours, then all's well and good.
Remove the chicken from the marinade and place onto an oven tray. Any remaining marinade (and there should be very little) should be rubbed over the chicken.
Place in the oven and cook until the chicken, when pierced with a knife at the thickest part, reveals a volcano of clear juices. In a normal oven at 180c, about 40 - 45 minutes probably. For us, with this oven, it took about an hour and 10 minutes.
Serve with whatever accompaniment you like to happy children and partner. Enjoy!