Based upon a recipe by Diana Henry that I have made many many times, this chicken dish may not look like much in the photo below, but please believe me when I say that it is one of our family favourites, especially when served with some lovely fresh baby spring greens (or other green veg) and chicken stock infused rice. This time around I made it as a comforting lunch for my big sister, while we help to look after her after elbow reconstruction surgery (ouch). Suffice to say she loved it. Serves 4.
2 tbsp olive oil
2 onions, thinly sliced
4 large chicken thigh fillets cut into halves
125ml dry vermouth or white wine
Half a lemon
25g dill, leaves only, chopped
60ml double cream
125ml chicken stock
- Start heating your oven to 180C fan, and while that’s happening, either in a large frying pan or (preferably) some sort of hob to oven receptacle, fry the onion in the olive oil for around 10 minutes until really soft and translucent.
- Add in the chicken pieces, season well, and brown all over (you might need to add the chicken in batches so that they have space to brown).
- Stir in the vermouth or white wine and let it bubble away for a couple of minutes.
- Squeeze in the juice from the lemon, slice it into 2 and drop those into the mix, along with around three quarters of the chopped dill and give it a good stir.
- If you’re using a frying pan then now’s the time to scrape the whole lot into an oven proof dish, then put your dish of whatever type into the hot oven for 25 minutes – keep an eye on it, if all of the liquid bubbles away and it looks too dry at any point add in a little water and give it a stir.
- When the chicken is completely cooked, return the dish to the stove (or scrape it all back into the frying pan) and over a low heat stir in the cream and chicken stock and let it simmer gently.
- Serve with rice or mashed potatoes and plenty of green veg and the remaining dill.
Note: To make the chicken rice I washed basmati rice three times then added double the volume of cold water, crumbled in a chicken stock cube and added a large knob of butter. With a lid on I brought it to a boil, then reduced the heat to really low and let it ever so gently simmer for 15 minutes, then turned it off completely and let the steam work its magic. Only when ready to serve did I take the lid off and then fluffed it up with a fork.