Dinner with the girls and a weekend in Norfolk

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This past week was just lovely. I had a few evenings to myself but also had a wonderful dinner with Ro and Gaby one night. Ro cooked this really yummy chicken dish with mustard and panko breadcrumbs – recipe here – and we had a lovely time chatting and drinking prosecco.

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Gaby brought pudding; amazing doughnuts from Crosstown Doughnuts! We tried three different ones and they were all yummy (yuzu & passionfruit; cinnamon and raspberry) but I think the winner was the raspberry one.

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On Friday night I went up to Norfolk for the weekend and had such a lovely time walking on the beach, breathing in the (very) fresh air and just taking it easy.

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The countryside there actually looks a lot like the part of Sweden I’m from so I felt right at home, although the beaches here were even wider. It was so nice to be in the countryside and lower the pace for a bit.

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And eat nice food in cosy country pubs and have fish and chips by the beach. Now, it’s back to the real world, but that’s quite nice too!

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Weekday wonders: Egg-fried rice with chicken

If one, like me, never ever seem to get the quantities right when making rice, then you will probably end up with a lot of left over rice. And as I really dislike to throw away food, I want to use it up. The quickest (and tastiest) way to achieve that is to make egg-fried rice. It is a speedy supper that tastes wonderful.

You can vary it in any way you want; I used what I had at hand; green pepper, romano pepper, chicken thighs and salad onions. I enjoyed this with a dollop of a sauce made with creme fraiche and sweet chilli sauce because I had some left in the fridge. It is a nice addition, but it is nice without it too.

Egg-fried rice with chicken, serves 2

3 chicken thighs

1/2 green bell pepper

1 romano pepper

3 salad onions

neutral oil for frying

500 ml cold cooked rice

1 garlic clove

1 egg

a few drops sesame oil

soy sauce

sweet chilli sauce

salt, white pepper

Skin and de-bone the chicken and cut the meat into strips. Fry in oil on high heat until just cooked through, won’t take long. Add salt and pepper. Remove from the frying pan. Cut the peppers and salad onions into strips and fry in the same oan for about 5 minutes. Remove as well. Add more oil to the pan and lower the heat. Fry the rice for a few minutes until it is warm. Beat the egg with the sesame oil. Make some space in the frying pan by pushing the rice to one side. Pour in the egg onto the empty surface and let it set a little before mixing it with the rice. Fry for a few minutes. Add the vegetables and chicken. Add the garlic, soy sauce and sweet chilli after taste. Fry for another few minutes and adjust the seasoning. Serve and enjoy.

Chicken thighs with sambal oelek and basil

Once again, I am promoting chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts. I like that this meat always come with skin that you can crisp up. It is also a lot cheaper than chicken breasts, but the main advantage for me, is that the meat is so much juicier, and it is almost impossible to end up with dry meat on a chickn thigh.

This dish is perfect as a weekday dish or even a casual dinner party dish if you prefer, as the cream adds a little pinch of sofistication. I am certainly pleased with the combination of basil and sambal oelek, it really works!

Chicken thighs with sambal oelek and basil, serves 3

800 g (ca 6) chicken thighs

butter/oil for frying

1 large leek, sliced

300 ml single cream

3 tsp sambal oelek

2 tsp Chinese soy

1 garlic cloves

a splash of concentrated chicken stock or 1/4 stock cube

salt, white pepper

a bunch or fresh basil, chopped

Brown the chicken thighs on high heat in the fat, until gold and crispy skin. Transfer to a plate. Fry the leek in the same frying pan until it has some colour. Place it in the bottom of a greased gratin dish. Place the chicken fillets on top, skin side up. Mix cream, soy, sambal oelek, garlic and stock in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Let it thicken while stirring. Season with salt and pepper, add the basil. Pour the sauce into the gratin dish and place it in a 200C oven for 15-20 minutes. Make sure the chicken is cooked through. A lot of meat juices will make the sauce thinner, which I quite like. If you want a thicker sauce pour it back into the saucepan, add thickening granules and let it thicken for a few minutes and pour it back into the dish to serve. Serve with potato wedges or rice and steamed broccoli.