One Dish Meals: Chicken Calamansi

 

 

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When it comes to chicken, there are some folks that prefer dark meat-the legs-drumsticks and thighs-and others that are strictly white meat only. Some dishes work better with breast, like a chicken kebab, and the legs-somewhat tricky to bone- are often set aside for fried chicken, or barbecued drumsticks, or for braising and stewing. For me, if I’m braising or stewing I prefer the rich, darker and moister meat of chicken legs, cut to separate the thigh from the drumstick. And I’m always excited to try a recipe that highlights this wonderful and economical cut. Cue the classic dish from the Philippines, Chicken Asado.

This delicious dinner marries chicken, tomato, soy and the bright flavours of calamansi with onion and garlic, red peppers, and wedges of potatoes. And it’s ready from start to finish in under an hour. And it only takes one pot. Win win win.

 

calamansi

 

Calamansi is a citrus fruit that is pretty much ubiquitous in the Philippines. Also known as calamondin, this little citrus tree bears small, ornamental fruit that starts out tart and green and ripens to a slightly sweeter orange. It is this combination of natural sweet and sour flavours, even slightly bitter, that add a delightful zip to this dish. Clamansi juice is used in much of Asian cooking, and it is also sold in concentrated form and as a refreshing sparkling beverage.

 

St. Maarten Calamansi 1.75L (CNW Group/AllJuice International Inc.)

 

Here is an adapted recipe for this surprising one-pot wonder that is sure to answer the age-old question, “What do I do with these chicken legs?”

Chicken Asado

Serves 3

Ingredients

 3 chicken legs, cut into 6 pieces

1 tbs olive oil

3 medium sized Yukon gold potatoes, or, if large, peeled and cut into six wedges each

¼ cup butter

1 medium onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1-28 oz can whole tomatoes

3 bay leaves, 3 kaffir lime leaves

4 tablespoons calamansi or lemon juice

1/2 red pepper, cut into strips

1 tablespoons soy sauce (not dark mushroom)

Instructions

Pre-heat oven to 400F

 Separate the thighs from the drumstick and season with salt and pepper. Add I tbs oil to a roasting pan and sear the chicken. Remove chicken from pan and set aside. Drain pan of most of the fat. In the same pan melt the butter and sauté the onions until soft. Add the garlic and stir. Add the bay and kaffir lime leaves and saute for a minute. Break up the canned tomatoes a bit with your hands and stir to the pan. Increase heat. When the sauce begins to boil stir in the soy sauce and calamansi juice and add the red pepper slices. Add chicken and potatoes to the pan and arrange evenly. Cook in 400F oven for half an hour or until chicken temp is 165F.

 

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