Basic Dish Spiced Up: Inspired by the Love of Chicken
How was your weekend? Well, mine was quite exciting and adventurous. My friend decided that she wants to spend her 30th out on the wild – doing things that on a normal day you wouldn’t be caught dead doing – like hiking and zip lining in a Forest. Love dictates that for amazing friends like she is, you drop everything you had planned to do and tag along with her and ensure that you’re beside her as she fulfills her birthday wish. I will tell you about my experience soon.
Although, I was capturing my experience with a cracked/broken screen. So it wasn’t as rousing, because I had to squint through the screen to appreciate what I was capturing. The butterfingers in me dropped the phone about a week ago and shattered the screen (even the screen protector couldn’t save the day). How it happened? I was running up the stairs, yes running! When I am on my own and being myself, I am unable to gracefully walk up the stairs like the lady I am. On that fateful day, I kinda missed a step and as I was trying to regain my balance and prevent myself from getting hurt, I let go of the phone and it went crashing down. It landed smack on its face. My heart crushed a little to be honest, just a little. I had more grand things to worry about at that point.
It dawned on me as soon as I had let go of it, that I should have been more calculative (shoulda-woulda-coulda). And as I was picking it up, I shut my eyes hoping that by some sheer luck it had escaped unscathed. But of course as nature dictates, Murphy’s Law happened. There I was looking at a screen with countless cracks running across it. iSad! Then I tried to use it and it was working perfectly. It happened at such a bad time in the month, so I wasn’t about to dig deep into my pockets to fix it. I used it that way. Only that I felt that I needed to give disclaimers like ‘excuse the cracks on my phone, clumsy is not my M.O please.’ So I’d had for a week, until the husband empathized with me and decided to step in and assist. Hallelujah!
Talk of a not-so-subtle reminder to appreciate the little extras in life and not take them for granted. Like having a phone (since I’ve been without a phone today) and having a flawless screen (since it has just been fixed). We thank God.
I realized that I haven’t done a chicken recipe after one of my readers asked me how I prepare my chicken. I have only done the roasted version, but not the pan one. It happens to be one of my favorite meats. I could eat chicken every day given the chance, but because we like to balance our meal plans, we have it at least once a week (mostly for me). So I am currently into chicken thighs; they’re meaty, juicy and not chewy at all. So instead of buying a full chicken, I’d rather order chicken thighs from City Market. Please note, it’s not drum sticks.
- 1KG of chicken thighs – usually about 8 succulent pieces
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 1 green and red pepper, finely chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, grated
- 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon of paprika and ginger
- ½ teaspoon of black pepper
- A pinch cayenne pepper and salt to taste
- A bunch of fresh coriander, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil for frying
- Place the chicken thighs in a strainer and run water through it to wash it – so that it can drain all the water.
- Place them in a bowl, rub and mix it up with the salt and spices – paprika, ginger and black pepper. I do this because chicken doesn’t usually absorb them easily.
- In a pan, add your finely chopped red onions and let them fry a little, and then add the finely chopped green and red bell pepper and allow to cook until softened. This will take 3-4 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes (and sometimes I add a teaspoon of Royco give it some taste) and ¼ cup of water. Allow it to cook for about 2-3 minutes.
- Right after, add your chicken thighs and on low heat, let them simmer – with the water you had added and the chicken also has its own water. I do this for about 30 minutes, so let’s say, 15 minutes each side. Please note, this is done with the pan covered.
- Then remove the pan cover and increase the heat to medium-high heat. This is so that the water can evaporate and the chicken fries in its oil. Also, check to ensure that it’s completely cooked – you never want to have under-cooked chicken. I usually wait for it to brown a bit as well.
- Taste to ensure that the flavors are still intact and absorbed into the chicken.
- Once it is cooked through, you can add your finely chopped coriander and serve.
I forgot to take the picture when served but you can serve this alongside some steamed coconut rice and veggies (I love spinach). It’s a bit oily as you can see, but that’s how chicken generally is. I didn’t know where to classify it, under stew or fry. So let’s just call it a chicken meal.
Try it out and let me know how it pans out. Have a blessed week ahead.
Signing Off ~~~ *Kawi*