We invited my mother-in-law and family for Mother’s Day. We had beautiful weather and decided to braai chicken on the Weber. Our starter was Pear, Broccoli and Blue Cheese Soup. The chicken recipe comes from Sam Woulidge’s new recipe book, Confessions of a Hungry Woman. (Random House Struik). It is a brilliant recipe for chicken, but next time I would bake it in the oven, as she suggests. It is important to grill the chicken in the oven to achieve the golden brown colour.
Nicolene Shipton’s Rosemary and Lemon Chicken
• 18 Chicken thighs, bone in with skin
• 1 cup (250ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 30g fresh rosemary, torn
Place the chicken in an ovenproof dish and pour over the lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and scatter over the rosemary. Cover the dish with foil and refrigerate for 12 hours. (You don’t need all of this; if in a hurry, a couple of hours will do.)
Preheat the oven to 220 °C and bake the chicken (covered in foil) for about 1 hour.
Then remove the foil and grill until the skin is crispy.
To accompany the chicken, I roasted carrots; sliced onion; parsnips; courgettes; corn and butternut in the oven, with lots of olive oil, fresh sprigs of thyme, sea salt and ground black pepper for an hour on 200ºC. (Cover with foil for the first 50 minutes in the oven.) I also roasted potato wedges, including lovely pink potatoes from Woolworths, with garlic butter, salt and Italian Herbs.
A pear, broccoli and blue cheese soup was the starter, served in dainty cups. The soup is easy to prepare.
Pear and Blue Cheese Soup
Chop and fry two leeks in a bit of Canola oil; add two large sliced potatoes and fry until soft. Add 500ml of chicken stock, two packets of Woolworth’s tender stem broccoli, a large tin of pears (including the sauce), as well as salt and ground black pepper to taste. I also add a touch of curry powder, not too much. Blend the soup with a hand blender and then add a wedge of blue cheese and 250ml of cream. Serve in small coffee cups and top each cup with a crouton on which you have melted a bit of Mozzarella cheese.
For dessert I mixed whipped cream, crumbed meringue, berries marinated in cherry liqueur and sugar, as well as berry coulis from Woolworths, in pretty glasses.
Wine from the surrounding wine farms and beautiful flowers completed the meal. We had our favourite white wine, Durbanville Hills Sauvignon Blanc and for a red, we had the Delheim Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz.
I used my beautiful antique white French tablecloth which a French friend, Catherine, was so kind to send me all the way from Die in the South of France. It was her grandmother’s, and when Catherine heard that I love French linen, she was so kind to part with it. It is absolutely magnificent, especially with her grandmother’s monogram embroidered on it.