Updated Jul 4, 2019Manpreet Manesh
This pepper chicken recipe from Alfred Prasad is sure to become a staple in many households. It is a superb one-pot chicken recipe, uniquely flavoured by a sprinkling of crushed peppercorns, cardamom pods and a ginger and garlic paste. If you don’t want to use chicken on the bone, use skinned pieces of chicken breast, which will also speed up this recipe considerably. Fabulous served right away, this Indian pepper chicken also keeps wonderfully for the next day.
Alfred Prasad’s years at Tamarind saw the restaurant awarded one Michelin star, which it retained, and a stack of accolades (including numerous ‘Indian Restaurant Of The Year’ titles).
NutritionCalories 15, Protein 66 g, Carbohydrates 77 g, Fat 55 g, Fibre 44 g, Sodium 66 mg. Good source of Fibre Excellent source of Iron High source of Calcium Very high source of Magnesium
- Read the package label to see what parts are contained in the package, a product description, the total weight, a sell-by date and nutritional information.
- The “sell-by” date is 7 to 10 days after the chicken was slaughtered and if properly refrigerated it should remain fresh 2 to 3 days after that date. If it is a “used-by” date, the chicken should be cooked or frozen by that date.
- Choose plump, moist chicken with skin that is not patchy or transparent in appearance.
- When choosing fresh chicken, avoid meat that show signs of freezing by feeling or looking for ice formation. When choosing frozen chicken, select one that is rock hard and shows no signs of freezer burn.
- Use moisture proof wrap or bags when freezing chicken. Wax paper is not moisture proof and should not be used because it would not hold the moisture in the meat.
- Be sure all packages are marked with the content and the date the chicken was frozen.
- Wrapping individual chicken parts in foil or with freezer wrap and then placing in a freezer bag will allow you to take out only the number of pieces you will need.
- Freeze fresh chicken as soon as possible to maintain the best quality.
- Store frozen chicken in a freezer unit to obtain maximum storage time.
- Thaw frozen chicken using one of three methods: in the refrigerator; in a cold water bath, changing the water every 30 minutes; or in the microwave. NEVER thaw chicken at room temperature
- Be sure the chicken, particularly a large whole bird, is defrosted thoroughly to ensure proper cooking. Place a hand inside the cavity of the chicken to check for ice crystals. If any crystals are present, more thawing time is needed.
- Thawed chicken should be cooked as soon as possible. If not using the chicken immediately, store in the refrigerator and use within 24 hours of thawing.
- Remove the giblets from the cavity of a whole chicken as soon as thawing allows.
- While the chicken is thawing, be sure drippings do not contaminate other food or preparation surfaces.
Tips for Checking Doneness:
- When cooking a whole chicken, the skin should be golden brown and the legs should move easily in their joints.
- When pricked in the thigh or breast, the juices should run clear with no pinkish coloring. Tilting a whole bird up, so the juices from the cavity run out, should also show clear juices.
- To ensure doneness, check the temperature of the chicken with a meat thermometer. A thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh or breast should produce a temperature of 170°F.
- When a slit is cut into the thickest part of the chicken, it should show meat that is opaque in appearance.
Tips for Frying Chicken:
- It is best to leave the skin on while cooking. If desired, remove before eating.
- When pan-frying, cover for the first 5 minutes of cooking and then uncover for the remainder of the cooking time. Covering for a short period of time will help cook the chicken thoroughly.
- Use tongs or a spatula instead of a fork when placing chicken pieces in the pan or when turning the pieces. Piercing the chicken with a fork allows the juices to escape.
- Be sure all utensils and equipment are dry before they come in contact with the oil. Water will make the oil splatter when heated.
- Using canola oil provides a milder taste, and it contains healthier amounts of saturated and polyunsaturated fats.
- Remove pieces of chicken from the oil as soon as they finish cooking. To keep the chicken warm while other pieces are cooking, set the pieces that are done on a baking pan covered with paper towels and place it in the oven at a low temperature.
- Do not cover the chicken once it has finished cooking, because covering will cause the coating to loose its crispness.
Wine Pairing Tips
Champion the Wine
The number one guideline is to bring out the best characteristics of a wine. A high tannin red wine will taste like sweet cherries when paired with the right dish. Focus on the characteristics that you want to champion and make sure that the wine will shine instead of fighting against the food.
Bitter + Bitter = Bad
Since our tastebuds are very sensitive to bitterness, it’s important not to overwhelm that sensitivity by pairing bitter food with high tannin wine. Green Beans with Cabernet Sauvignon will multiply bitter tastes. If you want to pair a high tannin wine, look to foods with fat, umami, and salt for balance.
Wine Should be Sweeter
As a general rule, make sure that the wine is sweeter than the food it is accompanying and you will have a successful wine pairing. If the wine is less sweet than the food it’s matched with, it will tend to taste bitter and tart. This is why Port wine is perfect with dessert.
Wine Should be More Tart
A wine should have higher acidity than the food it’s matched with, otherwise it will taste flabby. For instance, a salad with vinaigrette is better with an extra brut Champagne than a buttery Chardonnay.
Improve an Earthy Wine
Ever hear that old world wine is better with food? On their own, old world wines can be very earthy and tart. However, when you pair an earthy wine with something even moreearthy like mushroom stroganoff, then the wine tastes more fruity.