Coconut chicken with roast garlic and lime

"White rice is the obvious pairing for this fragrant chicken – sprinkle it with some chopped pistachios. Egg noodles are a good alternative." Yotam Ottolenghi

  • Preparation time: 15 minutes, plus marinating
  • Cooking time: 90 minutes
  • Total time: 105 minutes, plus marinating 60 minutes 45 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients

4 chicken breasts, skin on
1 x ½ tsp salt
1½ tsp hot chilli flakes
2½ tbsp olive oil
1 garlic bulb
3 red peppers, cut into 1cm strips
8 cloves
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3 cardamom pods, seeds
1 x ½ tsp fennel seeds
1 x ½ tsp coriander seeds
2 red onions, thinly sliced
1 tbsp fresh root ginger, finely chopped
400ml chicken stock
150ml coconut milk
1 tbsp lime juice
25g pack coriander, chopped

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. Put the chicken breasts in a bowl. Add the salt, half the chilli flakes and 1 tbsp olive oil. Stir, cover and chill for 1 hour.

2. Cut off the top of the garlic bulb so the cloves are just exposed; wrap in foil. Cook in the oven for 40 minutes, until the cloves are soft and sweet. Meanwhile, toss the red peppers with ½ tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt; roast on a baking tray for 20 minutes.

3. In a separate small frying pan, dry-fry the remaining chilli fl akes with the rest of the spices for 2 minutes. Allow to cool, then process to a powder in a spice mill or pestle and mortar. Set aside.

4. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large sauté pan over a high heat. Add the chicken breasts and sear well for about 3 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken and set aside, then add the red onions to the pan and sauté over a medium heat for 15 minutes.

5. Squeeze out the soft garlic cloves and add to the pan along with the ground spices and the ginger. Finally, return the seared chicken to the pan along with the stock; it should almost cover the chicken. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover the pan and simmer for 10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

6. Remove the chicken and boil the sauce rapidly to reduce and thicken it (about 5 minutes). Add the coconut milk, stir and reduce a little further if necessary. Return the chicken to the pan to warm through, then stir in the lime juice and peppers; season. To serve, slice the chicken breasts at an angle, spoon over the sauce and sprinkle with coriander.