Chicken With Apricots, Bacon, And Pistachios

Chicken with apricots, bacon,  and pistachios

Chicken with apricots, bacon, and pistachios

Sometimes inspiration arrives via the most tortuous of routes.

I’d been indecisive about what to cook for dinner the whole day. I’d tried all the usual tricks to un-block the idea jam  – going for a walk, drinking a nice pot of Pu-Erh, chasing the cat, gazing out to sea, plane spotting, being chased by the cat – but nothing could start the old creative juices pumping.

Getting grumpier by the minute, I slung a batch of crisp-bread in the oven, and promptly fell asleep in the sofa.

I awoke 1 hour and 10 minutes later to the sound of the oven’s timer pinging repeatedly, and the cat sat on my head meowing hungrily.

I was pleased to find, however, that I had come to with an idea for dinner firmly lodged in the “let’s do stuff” part of my conscious mind.

One minute and 45 seconds later, with a now contented cat busy chowing down on lamb and chicken, and crisp-bread cooling on a wire rack, I was heading out the door, a very hastily scribbled shopping list in my hand….

Chicken With Apricots, Bacon, And Pistachios

Ingredients

  • 1.5kg chicken pieces
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 5 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 280g cubed, smoked bacon
  • 100g dry roasted pistachios
  • 100g dried apricots, sliced into thirds
  • 250 ml coconut cream
  • 2 tsp smoked Spanish paprika
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • olive oil

Method

  • Heat 4 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat in a large, lidded, non-stick pan. Stir fry the bacon until golden brown. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, leaving the rendered fat in the pan. Set the bacon aside.
  • Add the onion to the pan. Stir fry until soft and golden, about 5 minutes or so.
  • Add the apricots and dried roasted pistachios. Continue to stir fry for a further 3 minutes.
  • Add the garlic and smoked Spanish paprika. Continue to stir fry for a further 3 minutes.
  • Return the bacon to the pan. Stir well. Add the coconut cream, season with freshly ground black pepper to taste, then simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the chicken pieces to the pan, and then add sufficient hot water to just cover the chicken. Cover with the lid, and return to a low simmer.
  • Cook the chicken for 25 minutes on low heat. Turn the chicken in the sauce, and cook for a further 25 minutes.
  • Check the chicken to see if it is thoroughly cooked – the juices should run clear, and the meat should have lost its raw, pink colour. Continue to cook if required.
  • Once the chicken is cooked to your satisfaction, remove the pan from the heat. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then serve together with a side of cauliflower rice.
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