Chicken with couscous, honey and cinnamon

Chicken with couscous, honey and cinnamon

By
From
River Cottage Every Day
Serves
2
Photographer
Simon Wheeler

Whilst I’ve got nothing against a good chicken sandwich, there are many more exciting things you can do with a few shreds of cold roast chicken. Couscous is a very useful medium for leftover meat, and this is one of my favourite ways to eat cold chicken. Take a tub of this with you to work, or serve up with crisp lettuce leaves as a quick supper.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
75g blanched almonds
2 tablespoons rapeseed or olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
125g couscous
1 tablespoon runny honey
250ml boiling water, or chicken or vegetable stock
150g cold cooked chicken, cut into small pieces
1 small pickled lemon, pulp discarded and skin finely chopped, (or the grates zest of 1/2 fresh lemon)
a good squeeze lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped parsley or mint
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Put the almonds in a dry frying pan and toast over a medium heat for a few minutes, tossing occasionally, until golden brown. Leave to cool, then chop them very roughly.
  2. Heat the oil in a small saucepan, add the onion, garlic and some salt and pepper and sweat gently for about 10 minutes, until softened. Add the cinnamon, then take off the heat and stir in the couscous.
  3. Stir the honey into the boiling water or stock until dissolved, then pour over the couscous (it should just cover it) and put a tight-fitting lid on the pan. Leave for 10 minutes, until the couscous has swollen up and absorbed all the liquid. Fluff it up with a fork, transfer to a bowl and leave to cool.
  4. Toss the chicken pieces, almonds, pickled lemon or zest, and the lemon juice into the couscous and season to taste.
  5. Pack into a lunchbox, or pile into a serving dish for serving at the table. Either way, finish with a sprinkling of parsley or mint and a good grinding of black pepper.

Variation

  • Leftover lamb with couscous, lemon and mint

    Prepare the couscous as above, leaving out the cinnamon and honey. Toss about 150g shredded cold roast lamb into the couscous, along with the grated zest and juice of 1 lemon and 2 tablespoons of chopped mint. You can keep the almonds or not, as you prefer, and/or add a couple of handfuls of chopped dried apricots, if you like.
Tags:
River Cottage
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
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