Hello again. It has been awhile between posts, with good reason. You see, we have moved house, for the last time. It has been a 2 ½ year journey but we have finally made it into our new home that we have planned and dreamed about from the ground up. It’s still a bit chaotic around here with boxes all over the place and plenty of mud in what will become our garden, but we are home.
I am still learning how to use my new kitchen having switched from a gas cooktop to induction and installed a steam oven that makes the best rice ever. My cooking has stuck mostly to recipes I don’t have to think too much and require only the utensils that I have dug out of a box.
The recipe I bring you today has appeared at our dinner table several times lately, mostly because it helped use up some leftovers from the fridge on days when I had been busy packing and sorting. As usual this recipe leaves plenty of room for you to play around with flavours or ingredients you have on hand.
I start by removing the meat from an already cooked BBQ chicken. I find this is easiest to do while the chicken is still warm. Some potatoes are par-boiled before being peeled and sliced. I also slice half an orange sweet potato (kumara) wafer thin using my V-slicer (aka mandolin). Half of each potato is arranged over the base of a baking dish.
To make the chicken filling I sauté chopped bacon, then make a sauce around it with a splash of white wine, chicken stock, milk and mustard. In goes some finely chopped zucchini and the shredded chicken before spreading the mixture over the potatoes. The remaining potatoes are arranged over the filling.
I like to scatter some breadcrumbs and a little cheddar cheese over the top for a crunchy finish.
Below the recipe I have listed some ideas for alternatives. Perhaps you can come up with some more to share….
½ – ¾ (400g) barbeque chicken, meat chopped and skin and bones discarded
250g sweet potato (kumara), thinly sliced
2 teaspoons butter
2 teaspoons olive oil
80g shortcut bacon, fat removed, chopped
2 tablespoons spelt flour
¼ cup dry white wine (optional)
1 ¼ cups chicken stock, or water plus ½ onion free stock cube such as Massel 7’s
¼ cup milk, lactose free if required
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ medium zucchini, finely chopped
¾ cup fresh wheat-free breadcrumbs
½ cup grated cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Place unpeeled potatoes in a pot and cover with water; bring to the boil and cook for 15 minutes until just starting to become tender. Drain and peel when cool enough to handle, and cut into 5mm slices.
To make the chicken filling, heat oil and butter in a fry pan and cook bacon for 3-4 minutes until just starting to brown. Add flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add wine and stir well, then continue adding the stock and stirring to form a smooth sauce. Stir in the milk and mustard. Add the zucchini and chicken and mix until evenly combined.
Grease a large baking dish with oil. Arrange half of the sliced potatoes over the base of the dish and then arrange a layer of the thinly sliced sweet potato. Spread the chicken filing over the potatoes. Arrange the remaining sweet potato over the filling and top with the potato slices.
In a small bowl combine the breadcrumbs, grated cheese and olive oil and sprinkle over the potato.
Bake in the oven for 50 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender when a knife is inserted. If the top seems to be browning too quickly, cover with foil. Stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.
So here are some options for you: