As the weather has turned slightly warmer we look to lighter and greener dishes but still warming enough if there’s a last-minute chill in the air. This week sees us cook up a chicken and leek casserole with aduki beans and sugar snaps for colour, crunch and contrast. The list of ingredients may seem long, but each item is needed and the cooking time is worth the wait.
The recipe will serve 4 people when served with steamed potatoes or crusty bread, which also help soak up all the flavour in the stew liquid.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes
- 8 chicken thighs – skinned and boned
- 4 leeks – washed and trimmed
- 1 onion
- Garlic oil
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp mustard powder
- 400ml chicken stock
- 1 glass of white wine (we had a Chardonnay to hand and a glass to drink too)
- 1 can of aduki beans – drained and rinsed
- 200 sugar snaps
- 2 tsp (heaped) cornflour
- Start by setting your oven to 180ºC and boiling the kettle if you’re using a stock cube.
- In a large, ovenproof casserole dish gently heat a couple of glugs of the garlic oil. Meanwhile chop the onion and slice the leek. Add to the pan and fry for 5 minutes until soft. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add the chicken thighs to the pan with a little more garlic oil and turn the heat up to medium-high. You want to turn the meat so that it is cooked on all sides with a bit of colour. Do not worry about cooking the chicken all the way through at the moment as it will get a further blast in the oven later.
- Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside with the leeks and onions.
- Add the white wine to the pan and quickly whisk, which will help get any slightly crispy bits off the bottom of the pan – and into the stock where their flavour will be most welcome.
- Add the chicken stock, thyme, mustard powder and cornflour then whisk until well combined and the liquid slightly thicker.
- Return the chicken, leeks and onion to the pan carefully then add the aduki beans. Give everything a quick stir and then bring to a gently bubble.
- Pop the lid on (or fashion one out of tinfoil if your casserole dish doesn’t have an ovenproof lid) and gently manoeuvre into the oven. Cook for 20 minutes, then remove. Add the sugar snaps and cook for a further 10 minutes.
- Serve with steamed potatoes or crusty bread to soak up all the delicious juices.