Tag Archives: lardons

Paprika Chicken with Peas and Lardons

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Here is a nice, tasty and easy way to jazz up the classic trinity of chicken, peas and potatoes. A real crowd-pleaser, this dish is ideal for a relaxed meal with friends.

You will need (for 4 people):
8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
4 tbsp plain flour
4 tbsp rapeseed oil (or other cooking oil)
2 large onions
4 cloves garlic
2 tbsp paprika
800 g potatoes
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp tomato purée
A splash brandy (optional)
500 ml chicken stock

For the peas:
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
1 medium onion, chopped
200 g peas, fresh or frozen
80 g lardons
1 bay leaf
400 ml vegetable stock

Method:

Cut the chicken thighs into bite-sized chunks. Peel the onions and cut into wedges. Peel the potatoes and cut in 2 or 3 depending on size.

In a large, heavy based pan or casserole, heat up half of the oil. Flour the chicken, then fry in batches until nicely coloured on all sides. Reserve on a plate covered with kitchen paper.

Warm up the rest of the oil in the same pan, add the onion wedges and the peeled garlic cloves and cook gently for about 2 min. Add the paprika, then the potatoes and stir well. Add the tomato purée, leave to cook for a minute, then add the vinegar and brandy.

Put the chicken back in, add the stock and bring to the boil. Cover, and leave to simmer for about 15 min, then take the lid off and simmer for a few more minutes until the potatoes are tender and the sauce has thickened. Check the seasoning, and adjust if necessary.

Meanwhile, make the peas:

In a saucepan, heat up the oil, and gently fry the lardons and onions. When the onions have softened a bit, add the peas and stir.

Add the vegetable stock, bay leaf, and a bit of black pepper. Bring to the boil then turn the heat down and simmer for about 10 min. Using a fine sieve, drain any remaining stock out, and transfer to a warm serving dish.

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Filed under Mains, Meat dishes

The Real Quiche Lorraine (Warning: No Cheese or Onions Allowed)

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I am a self-confessed Quiche Lorraine bore.

You see, I am from Lorraine, and therefore consider my recipe to be the definitive one. And I do not tolerate for any liberties to be taken with it. Only shortcrust pastry, lardons, eggs, cream and seasoning are allowed. Nothing more, nothing less.

Because the beauty of Quiche Lorraine resides in its simplicity.

Which is why to me, the addition of cheese is just pure heresy. I pour scorn on the use of onions. And if you dare add mushrooms, peppers, or, horror of horrors broccoli, I shall track you down and force you to listen to Celine Dion’s back catalogue in a loop until you see the error of your ways and promise never to do it again.

Ok, rant over.

Quiche Lorraine is meant to be shared, and perfect for an informal party. It can be made ahead, is delicious hot or cold, and everyone knows that it tastes even better if you ditch the cutlery.

You will need:

300 g plain flour
150 g unsalted butter, cold, diced
200 g lardons (or diced bacon, or pancetta)
3 eggs
250 ml crème fraîche
150 ml double cream
Salt
Pepper

Method:

Make the pastry. In a large bowl, add a pinch of salt and the butter to the flour. Work the flour into the butter between your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add enough cold water to bind, knead briefly then form into a ball (you can of course use a food processor instead if you prefer). Wrap in cling film then chill for 20 min.
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Preheat the oven to 200C/ fan 180C/ gas 6.

Roll out the pastry to line a 28 cm fluted tart tin (re-form any leftover pastry into a ball and freeze for another time). Chill again for 10 min, then line with foil, add baking beans, and bake blind for 15 min. Remove the foil and beans, and return to the oven for 5 min.
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While the pastry is in the oven, heat up a non-stick frying pan, and dry-fry the lardons for a few minutes. They should colour slightly, but make sure they don’t get crisp. Drain on kitchen paper.

In a large jug, slightly beat the egg, then mix with the creams. Season, being careful not to add too much salt, as the lardons will be quite salty already.
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Scatter the lardons over the pastry base, pull the oven shelf partially out of the oven, and place the tin on it. Carefully pour the filling, stopping just below the edge of the pastry. Push the shelf in gently, and bake for about 20 min until golden on top and soft in the middle.
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Filed under Buffet, Mains, Savoury Tarts, Starters