Herby Grilled Chicken, Gazpacho & Risotto

“I have a lot of time for vegetarians (though apparently not all of them have a lot of time for me), and that’s because I respect anyone with principles about food.”
― Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, River Cottage Veg Every Day!

Our new chef at the cooking club is Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and to begin our adventure into his recipes I chose three recipes for dinner herby grilled chicken, a simple chilled gazpacho with pan seared garlic shrimp and golden risotto with roasted tomatoes recipes from two of his books. Of course I did not leave well enough alone, but for the most part I did follow the recipes, but as it happens to be, I do like a chunkier gazpacho so most of the veggies were just small diced still a lovely chilled version served with grilled lemony shrimp and croutons…

Hugh’s Herby chicken is very adaptable chicken recipe where you can pan or oven roast, but I love using the Weber adjustable grill basket for the rotisserie not much hands on flipping and turning over the grill with juicy tender results after self basting in its own juices. Hugh recommends several herbs and my adapted version had Tarragon, oregano, thyme…

A golden, saffron-infused risotto and intense, oven-roasted tomatoes look stunning together on the plate. The flavours complement each other extremely well too, with the delicate, floral bitterness of saffron beautifully offsetting the sweetness of the tomatoes.

Hugh’s Herby BBQ Chicken slightly adapted

Marinade: I used the Food Sealer marinating canister, but a zip bag or covered bowl will do and you can cut the chicken into 6-8 pieces

Blend the following ingredients, slash the chicken in a few places and marinate for 4 hours…
4 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp English mustard
3 tbsp chopped mixed herbs, such as parsley and chives, plus a little tarragon or thyme
A little grated lemon zest and the juice of one lemon
A squeeze of lemon juice
Juice of half a lime
1 small garlic clove, very finely chopped
1 chicken, spatchcocked
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

*Additional Seasoning optional, sausage seasoning.
Grill over medium high grill heat or if you have the rotisserie set up, grill for 10 minutes over MMM heat, then switch to LML heat for another 40-45 minutes.

Saffron Rice adapted from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
Serves 4

1+1/2 tablespoons EVOO
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus extra to finish
1/2 large red onion, finely chopped
3-3 1/2 cups chicken stock
A large pinch of saffron strands
1 cup Arborio rice
about 12 half cup dry white wine
A bay leaf and/or a sprig of thyme (optional)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
*Optional 1/4 cup grated parmesan
*Optional 1/4 cup ricotta or mascarpone

For the roasted tomatoes (1 pound Campari) or your choice of small tomatoes, toss into roasting pan with 3 unpeeled cloves of garlic, drizzle with EVOO. season with salt, pepper and a few pinches of sugar. Roast at 350º 30-40 minutes and slightly charred. Serve with saffron risottos (mash the roasted garlic and stir into risotto).

Heat a dash of oil with the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and saute gently until soft add saffron, stir for a minute then add rice and stir for a minute or two. Pour in the wine and cook until absorbed, then add the bay leaf and/or thyme. Now add the stock, a quarter at a time, keeping the rice at a low simmer, stirring often. Let each batch of stock be absorbed by the rice before you add the next. Continue until creamy, 20–25 minutes. Take off the heat, if adding the optional cheeses, stir into rice along with a tablespoon of butter, cover and allow to rest for a few minutes. minutes.

Remove the bay leaf and/or thyme, fork through and season to taste. Spoon into warm bowls and top with the juicy roasted tomatoes.

Link to Hugh’s recipes: https://www.rivercottage.net/recipes/hughs-herby-barbecued-chicken