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Chicken, savoy and onion squash stew

Chicken, savoy and onion squash stew
By Donna Ross



Chicken, savoy and onion squash stew
Serves 4
Prep time: 20-30 minutes
Cooking time: 60 minutes plus over-night marinade

Savoy cabbage doesn't have to be relegated to just an accompaniment to a Sunday roast or sausage and mash, it is also a great addition to soups and stews. Its crinkly leaves and slightly tougher texture means it doesn't fall apart as much as regular green cabbage when added to a pot of simmering stock or sauce, and helps get another one of your five-a-day into dinner.

With all the vegetables in this stew, I finds that one chicken thigh per person is enough (especially if served with mashed potatoes or rice) but if you like a meatier dinner, add a drumstick per serving and increase the marinade quantities by half again.

For the marinade:
2tbsp cider vinegar
1 rounded tbsp Dijon or wholegrain mustard
Large pinch of chilli flakes
1 tsp each of dried thyme and oregano
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Slug of olive oil
A few grindings of pepper
4 chicken thighs, skin on or off as you prefer

For the rest of the stew:
1 onion squash, peeled and deseeded
1 small onion, sliced
3 sticks of celery, roughly chopped
500ml cider
1 small or half a large savoy cabbage, finely sliced

Mix all of the marinade ingredients together in a shallow dish big enough to hold the chicken pieces in a single layer. Add the chicken and coat well in the marinade. Cover the dish and leave to marinate in the fridge overnight (if you're preparing this the day of eating, a few hours in the marinade will be enough to get things started).

Once the meat has marinaded, get on with the rest of the stew.

Slice the squash into wedges about 2cm wide, and cut each in half. Fry the squash in a little oil over a medium-high heat until it starts to brown, after about 5 minutes - they don't need to cook through. Remove from the pan and set aside (I use the upturned lid!).

Fry the onion and celery for a few minutes until they soften and then add the chicken. Gently shake off any excess marinade and keep that. Turn up the heat a little so the chicken takes on a deep brown colour on each side. Once the chicken has browned add the cider and any remaining marinade and scrape off any stuck bits from the bottom of the pan and stir them into the cider. Add a pinch of salt and some pepper.

Add the squash pieces and if needed, top up with stock or water so that the chicken is almost covered in liquid.  Cover the pan and cook for about 30 minutes over a low heat, just so the stew is just gently bubbling. 

After 30 minutes check the sauce for seasoning and add more salt, pepper or chilli to your own taste. Scatter the savoy cabbage over the top of the stew and replace the lid so that the cabbage steams as the stew finishes cooking.  Cook for another 10 minutes, or until the cabbage is cooked to your liking.



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