Back to healthy recipes this week, with one that’s originally intended for the BBQ, but I’ve adapted for the oven (because living in the UK, the opportunities for BBQs are slim!)
Despite the relatively lengthy ingredients list, this is actually super-easy to make, but do prep in advance!
Although the barbecuing concept has a summery feel, the flavours themselves are also satisfyingly robust for the cooler, darker, autumn evenings.
But don’t take my word for it, get stuck in!
330ml Diet Coke
2tsp grated ginger
2tsp crushed garlic
1tbsp smoked paprika
2tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2tbsp dark soy sauce
1tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp sweetener
4 chicken breasts, diced
3 mixed peppers, chopped
2 red onions, chopped
I like the veg to be quite chunky – don’t chop them too finely, as you need to thread them onto skewers later!
This should serve four, apparently, but as per my usual greedy-guts status, half of it served me alone!
- Make the sauce by adding the coke, passata, ginger, garlic, paprika, Worcestershire Sauce, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and sweetener into a saucepan. Bring it all to the boil, then reduce and simmer for around half an hour, or until the sauce thickens. Remember to stir occasionally.
- Leave the sauce to cool. I use this time to chop the chicken
- In a bowl, add half the cooled sauce to the chicken, coating it thoroughly
- Cover and chill overnight (or for at least 6 hours)
- Pop the oven to about 180ºc fantastic (or 160ºc normal) to preheat
- Thread the chicken, peppers and onion onto some skewers, alternating accordingly. If you’re using wooden skewers, make sure you’ve soaked them in some water first, to stop them from burning in the oven!
- Pop the skewers in the oven for 20 minutes or so, or until the chicken is cooked through. It shouldn’t take long (especially if you’re using metal skewers) but you may want to turn them after about 10 minutes, just to ensure an even cook.
- Serve with the remaining sauce (for dipping), and the veg of your choice. I used some acti-fried potatoes, with the rest of the (roasted) veg that I couldn’t fit on my skewers!
It was a fantastic effort from ASDA this week, with a stonking £11.10 ahead of Sainsburys’ (you read that right) second place £11.92.
Tesco captured third place at £12.02, ahead of Morrisons’ £12.39.
The first time I made this as per the recipe, and it was amaaaaaaaazing! The second time round, I tried to be a smarty-pants, and used diet cherry coke instead of normal, thinking it would add a nice fruity touch. It wasn’t a disaster, but I genuinely preferred the original recipe, which is why I’ve presented that. Either the cherry coke added an unexpected slightly-bitter undertone to the sauce…. or I burnt it a little (but I really don’t think I did!)
The second tweak i made is to just use whatever peppers I had (yellow and orange) which is why I’ve just listed “mixed”, although the original recipe specifies 2 red and 1 yellow.
As I said above, this is originally a recipe for the BBQ, so if you have the weather, follow the method above, but instead of using the oven, pre-heat your BBQ to hot, and cook for about 10-12 minutes.
I really did like the idea of the skewers, so cooked it this way. However, you could also make a version of Hunters Chicken, by marinating a whole chicken breast, and then baking in the oven with some bacon & cheese, and topping with the remaining warmed sauce. This could be served on a bed of cheesy mashed potatoes, with some roasted veg on the side. I’ve frozen a marinated chicken breast to try this way, so can’t yet report back on whether it works or not! I can’t think why it wouldn’t, though.
Some chunks of pineapple might be nice on the skewers, for a sweet little tweak, although it may well dry out a bit too much. You could also spice the chicken a little, but I enjoyed the subtler tanginess of this version, it was very well-balanced!
Veggie options could work well by missing the meat out altogether and adding some par-boiled potatoes or even sweet potatoes… but I’ll hold my hands up now and say I’ve no clue how Quorn products would cope in the oven!
Different meats could work, although I’m not entirely sure if I’d fancy beef or pork. Turkey could be good for an even leaner option. I’d be quite intrigued to try it with chunks of sausage!
I found this one in the Slimming World magazine – I find the recipes in there of varying quality, and I have varying degrees of success with them… this one worked beautifully, though!