After I satisfied last weekend’s craving for some fried chicken livers (fried in a little butter, with red onion and fresh sage), said sage was left lurking in the fridge. As is often the way with fresh herbs, it’s quite hard to get through a big bunch of the stuff before it starts to wallow and wilt away.
Determined to use all of my 90p bunch of sage, I rustled up a mid-week supper; a chicken tray bake with sage, mustard and lemon, on top of sweet potato and red onion. I posted this dinner on BidmeadBites’s Instagram and it received several likes and some recipe requests.
Ever obliging to my lovely followers, here is the recipe. I used a half chicken which I had jointed it into four pieces. If the idea of jointing a chicken is daunting, you’d do well to watch this video here (thanks to a very retro Delia Smith).
Buying and eating a whole bird is not only cheaper, but more flavoursome – this tray bake includes not just plump breast, but dark meaty thighs and wings to chow down on too. However, if you find yourself buying some pre-prepped thighs and drumsticks, that will work equally as well here.
– half chicken, jointed into four parts (equivalent to three thighs and two drumsticks)
– 2 medium-size sweet potatoes
– 2 red onions
– 1 lemon
– 2 tbsp runny honey
– 2 tbsp whole grain mustard
– 4 tbsp olive oil
– Generous pinch of salt
– 2 tsp ground black pepper
– 1 tbsp Worcester sauce
– Handful of fresh sage, leaves only, leaves cut in half
1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees. Peel sweet potatoes and cut into slices about 2 cm thick. Peel and quarter the two red onions
2. Place potato and onion on the base of your baking tray, and place chicken on top.
3. In a jar, or anything you can give a good shake to, mix honey, mustard, olive oil, Worcester sauce, salt, pepper and sage (reserve 4 or 5 for the end). Squeeze in the lemon, leaving the halves somewhat intact to be halved again and nestled into the corners on the tray.
4. Pour this lovely paste over the tray, massaging it into the chicken and making sure the veg get some saucy action too.
5. Give a good grind of black pepper and an extra pinch of salt on top, sprinkling the spare sage leaves on top and add one more splash of Worcester sauce.
6. Place tray in now heated oven for 40 minutes, giving it a jig around half way through, distributing some of the sauce that will have gathered at the bottom of the tray over the top of the chicken.
I served this with boiled Italian farro, which is a grain similar to barley, and some steamed green veg. It’d go nicely with a fresh green salad too, with a nice chunky loaf of bread to soak up the sauce.