Recipe: Green peppercorn chicken with charred spring onions

Recipe: Green peppercorn chicken with charred spring onions

10m prep | 40m cook

Last updated

This dish might be simple and quick to make, but it packs a gigantic flavour punch thanks to the herbaceous brightness of the brined green peppercorns and the bitey kick of mustard and verjuice. Getting a good char on the spring onions adds depth and umami richness, and makes this as perfect for a weeknight dinner as it is for a special occasion.

A popular ingredient in South East Asian cuisines, green peppercorns are the unripe fruit of the pepper plant, harvested while at their most fragrant and preserved in a light brine. Incorporate them into curry pastes, scatter through salads or crush into a vibrant take on a classic pepper sauce.

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • One chicken, broken down into pieces, or 8 chicken thighs
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 3 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup verjuice
  • 1 tbsp green peppercorns in brine (plus extra to serve)
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 8 spring onions, cleaned and cut into 10cm lengths
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Season the chicken well on both sides with salt and freshly ground pepper. Heat a deep non-stick pan over medium-high heat and, when warm, add the olive oil. Fry the chicken (in batches if necessary) until well-browned all over. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside on a lipped plate or bowl (the chicken will release juices).

Lower the heat to medium and add the garlic to the pan. Fry for 2 minutes, or until softened, then add the mustard and stir well. Add the verjuice and mix until it combines with the mustard and becomes a smooth paste.

Add the stock and green peppercorns, bring the pot to a simmer, then return the chicken to the pan (and any juices collected in the bowl).

Once simmering, reduce the pan to low and cover. Cook for 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

While the chicken is cooking, place a baking rack over your largest gas stove flame and lay the spring onions across it, grilling them until the are charred in patches. Once each batch is charred, transfer to a covered heat-proof container where they will gently cook through with their residual heat. If you don’t have a gas stove, use your barbecue or preheat your oven to its hottest setting and roast the onions until they begin to blacken.

Serve the chicken with the spring onions, spoon over the sauce and top with a small scattering of extra green peppercorns.

Enjoy with rice or couscous.

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