Maille Culinary Challenge – Chicken Cous Cous with Hazelnut Oil

You’ve probably heard of Maille – they’re kind of a big deal: think sophisticated, elegant, French…and actually pretty old! Founded in 1747 Maille have been making condiments for 265 years and even supplied many a Royal family with only the finest ingredients!

With such great flavour sensations from the Maille products, they are running a competition called the “Maille Culinary Challenge” to share recipes that incorporate the intense Maille flavour into everyday cooking and transform your average dish into something wonderful!

maille

So with that in mind, I am entering a great Chicken cous cous dish. I am a big fan of cous cous, it’s light, it’s a relatively healthy grain and it is ridiculously quick to make – perfect if you are impatient and get ‘hangry'(angry when hungry) a lot. BUT, it can be extremely bland on its own and it definitely needs some jazzing up!

Ingredients
2 Chicken breasts (without skin)
Ground Cinnamon
Ground Nutmeg
Salt and Pepper to season
2 cups of Cous cous
Juice of 1 whole Lemon
2 handfuls of Spinach
1 handful of Basil leaves
1 Red Pepper
3/4 tablespoons of Capers
Flaked almonds
Maille Hazelnut oil
Creme fraiche/Yoghurt to serve

Kitchen Utensils/Items you may need to use:Greaseproof Paper
Rolling Pin
Grinder

Serves 2

Method
Get some greaseproof paper big enough to cover your chicken breasts and place the breasts on the paper.

Season the breasts with salt and pepper and then drizzle over generous amounts of the cinnamon and nutmeg (if you have allspice, you could use this instead). Do this on both sides and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty and really rub the spices in!

Cover the greaseproof paper over the top of the chicken breasts and grab whatever you have to hand that is pretty heavy and can flatten things – I tend to use a rolling pin, but you could use a cookery book!? Now, get all that pent up aggression out and bash your chicken breasts so they flatten out a little and are even in size (this means they will cook quicker!)

Leave the chicken to rest for a few minutes and grab your grinder/food processor.

Now you can shove in your spinach, basil leaves and red pepper and whizz everything up so it is all finely chopped.

Place your cous cous in a pan – if you use 1 cup, then pour 2 cups of boiling water over the cous cous (and likewise 2 cups of cous cous needs 4 cups of water) once the boiling water has covered the cous cous, you can place the lid or a plate over the pan and get a griddle pan heated up ready for the chicken!

The cous cous, literally takes about 4/5 minutes to fluff up and soak up the water and once it has you can squeeze the juice of your lemon through it and mix in your blended herbs and vegetables and some flaked almonds. Fluff this up with a fork and add a good few glugs of hazelnut oil to loosen and your cous cous is done!

By this time your griddle pan should be nice and hot, so on a low heat cook your chicken, turning both sides carefully and making sure it’s cooked the whole way through. Take it off the pan, slice in half and leave to rest whilst plating up your cous cous!

Once your cous cous is on the plate, you can pile on the chicken and more flaked almonds, at this point I like to drizzle more hazelnut oil over the dish. A nice dollop of crème fraiche or yoghurt to serve (with a little sage flower from the herb garden for garnish!) and you are ready to go!

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This really is a quick and easy recipe that can be rustled up in about 20-30 minutes. The saltiness from the capers really complements the sharp lemon cous cous and gorgeously nutty Maille Hazelnut oil

Have a look at the other recipes that have been concocted via twitter: #mailleflavours

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