Thursday, 16 January 2014

Zingy lemon chicken

The most notable thing about January used to be the January sales and the ads for holidays. Now it's the diets. This Christmas, the weather was so dire that we all had to hibernate and nibble our nuts whilst watching telly programmes about the morbidly obese. These shows revile, shock, inform and (perhaps) titillate, but they also normalise extreme fatness and make anyone under 20 stone feel slightly smug. If you are trying to lose a few pounds without resorting to bariatric surgery, this fresh and zingy ultra-low-fat chicken dish will brighten up the dullest of winter days and revive palates jaded by excessive consumption of Quality Street. Children love it too.

2 lemons and a half lemon with leaves

Zingy lemon chicken

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3 garlic cloves, crushed
grated zest and juice of 3 lemons*
½ - 1 red chilli, finely sliced*
4 tablespoons clear honey
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 packets of Ainsley Harriott's spicy couscous
A handful of fresh coriander

Mix together all the ingredients (except the chicken) to make a marinade. Pour it over the chicken in a non-metallic ovenproof dish, cover and leave for at least 2-3 hours or overnight in the fridge.

Pre-heat the oven to 200/gas 6 and bake the chicken in the marinade for 35-40 minutes, until the chicken is tender and cooked through.

Add the required amount of boiling water to the couscous, plus a handful of chopped coriander and some of the lemony-garlicky juices from the chicken when it has finished cooking.

Red chilli pepper half chopped on pig shape wooden chopping board
Chop chop

Time-saving tips

*A Microplane grater will make easy work of the lemons.
*Don't de-seed the chilli; simply hold it by the stalk and slice from the other end.

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