It is a fantastic day out today, although there is some rain in forecast for right around lunch-time. I thought to cook us a truly rustic and satisfying Sunday meal.
There is nothing more satisfying than seeing your loved ones and friends enjoy what you have prepared for them.
On the Menu
Salt & Pepper Roast Chicken
Crispy Garlic & Onion Young Green Beans
Honey Glazed Baby Carrots
Traditional South African Malva Pudding
For the Roast Chicken
- 1 free range whole clean chicken, taken from the freezer about 1 hour before prep (if you have a large family like mine – use 2)
- sea salt & freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 fresh rosemary twigs
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp farmers’ butter
- Preheat the oven to 180ºC
- Stuff the rosemary twigs and bayleave in the chicken
- In an oven-proof roasting dish, with a lid, (I use a heavy cast iron pot), place the chicken breast side up.
- Melt the butter and mix with olive oil. Generously pour over chicken.
- Sprinkle with sea salt and cracked black pepper.
- Cover with lid and pop it in the oven for about 2 hours – do not add water! The chicken will cook in its own juices. You may check your chicken after 90 minutes, if the juices run clear when poked, it’s done!
- Remove the lid and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until skin is nice and golden.
- Remove the chicken from the dish and leave to rest – do not wash the dish – you’re still going to use it!
For the Roast Potatoes (do the prepping of the potatoes while the chicken is in the oven)
- 5 tbsp (75ml) farmers butter
- 6 medium-sized potatoes (each about 175g), peeled
- 4 garlic cloves
- 4 sprigs thyme
- sea salt
- Turn the oven up from 180ºC to 190ºC
- Parboil the potatoes in salted water for 10 minutes until almost cooked (they will still feel firm when pierced with a knife). Drain thoroughly using a colander, then shake the potatoes around a little in the colander until the outsides are roughened.
- Put the farmers’ butter for the roast potatoes into the same roasting dish used for the chicken and heat in the oven for five minutes to mix with the left-over juices of the chicken (it should be a little sticky).
- Add the drained, roughened potatoes to the roasting dish, then sprinkle with the garlic cloves, thyme and sea salt and mix until the potatoes are well coated in the fat.
- Return the roasting dish to the oven and roast for 45-60 minutes, or until golden and crunchy.
For the Spicy Rice
- 700ml boiling water
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp (30ml) vegetable oil
- 1.25 cup (350g) long grain rice
- 100g frozen peas
- 1 tsp (5ml) turmeric
- ½ tsp (2.5ml) cumin
- salt and cracked black pepper (optional)
- Measure 700ml of boiling water into the measuring jug.
- Heat the oil in a saucepan on a medium heat.
- Add the onion and pepper and fry gently for 3 minutes.
- Add the rice and cook for 2 minutes, stirring all the time.
- Add the peas, turmeric and cumin.
- Add the water and stir. Bring to the boil and simmer for 3 minutes.
- Put the lid on the saucepan, remove from the heat and leave to stand for 20 minutes. Do not remove the lid during the standing time.
- Add salt and black pepper to taste (if using) and stir well before serving
For the Green Beans
- 1 pack (500g) young green beans
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 tsp (5ml) dried onion flakes
- 1 tbsp (15ml) farmers’ butter
- 1 tbsp (15ml) olive oil
- salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- Heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat in a non-stick skillet
- Add the green beans, garlic and union flakes.
- Sauté for about 5-7 minutes, make sure all the beans are covered with the butter and oil mixture.
- Serve immediately
For the Baby Carrots:
- 1 bag frozen Baby Carrots
- 2 tbsp (30ml) unsalted farmers’ butter
- 2 tbsp (30ml) honey
- 2 tbsp (30ml) brown sugar
- 2 tsp (10ml) fresh dill
- 2 tsp (10ml) fresh thyme leaves
- Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add carrots, honey, brown sugar, dill and thyme and gently toss to combine.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until carrots are tender, about 10-12 minutes.
- Serve immediately.
For the Malva Pudding
For the pudding
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup (175 g) cup sugar
- 1 tbsp (15ml) melted farmers’ butter
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tsp (5ml) vinegar
- 1/3 cup (80ml) milk
- 3/5 cup (150g) flour
- 1 tbsp (15ml) apricot jam
- 1 tsp (5ml) baking powder
For the sauce
- 3/4 cup (62.5ml) whole cream
- 1/4 cup (100g) farmers’ butter
- 1/3 cup (85g) brown sugar
- 1 split vanilla pod
- 1/3 cup (80ml) water
- Turn the oven to 175ºC.
- In a bowl, beat the eggs and the sugar (with an electric mixer) until it is foamy. It will take about 5 minutes.
- Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl, and mix well until thoroughly combined.
- Grease a oven proof dish. Add the batter to the greased dish and bake it for about 30 minutes, or until a pin comes out clean.
- Prepare the sauce while the pudding is in the oven. Add the cream, butter, brown sugar, vanilla and water to a saucepan, and heat it up until the butter is melted and it is nice and warm. Try not to eat it all before the cake comes out of the oven.
- When the pudding comes out of the oven, you simply pour the topping over the hot pudding little by little – don’t forget to remove the vanilla pod. The edges of my baking dish were not very high, so I did it in four rounds. Distribute it evenly since the edges usually get more of the liquid than the middle. If the pudding has a hard time absorbing the caramelly liquid, poke some holes with a pin along the way.
- Leave the pudding sitting for about 30 minutes (if you have the patience).
- Serve with good creamy vanilla ice-cream.