The thing about magazine recipes is that they can be rather daunting when you read through them. It’s only when you actually have the gumption to go and make the dish for yourself that you realize that it wasn’t so difficult; indeed, it could seriously be a walk in the park.
Case in point is the caramelized chicken recipe I found in an old issue of Delicious – Australia. The list of ingredients read like a litany and I seriously wondered if I could hack it. I’m glad I did: all you really have to do is bung everything – from the marinade to the chicken – into a large bowl, mix it all together, leave it to soak for a bit, then bake it for three quarters of an hour.
It has to be the most delicious recipe I’ve ever tried for chicken: the meat is gloriously tender and rich, the marinade lends it a sweet and tangy flavor, and the sauce is magnificent on plain rice or mashed spuds. The baked tomatoes and caramelized onions also add to the appeal.
This recipe has already been tweaked, seeing how I ran out of Worcestershire sauce midway, but it is amazing. The sweet chili sauce gives it extra oomph and a welcome hit of heat.
- 1 kilo mixed chicken legs and thighs (approximately 8 – 9 pieces)
- 2 large red onions, peeled and cut into wedges
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce or chili jam
- 2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 10 cherry tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 3 teaspoons water
In a large non-reactive bowl, combine the oil, ketchup, chili jam, soy, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, sugar, thyme, and pepper until the sugar has dissolved. Place the chicken and the onions in a large plastic container with a cover (or a very large Ziploc bag). Pour the marinade over, massaging it into the chicken. Cover (or lock the bag) and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees / Gas Mark 6. Put the chicken and onions in a large baking dish; pour the marinade over all. Bake for 35 minutes. Add the cherry tomatoes to the dish; bake an additional 10 minutes.
Remove the dish from the oven. Place the chicken, tomatoes, and onions on a serving dish. Skim the fat off the juices in the pan and transfer to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat and add the dissolved cornstarch. Cook whilst stirring till thickened; serve alongside the chicken.