|Wed 18th Oct '06 10:40PM
| I made chicken in plum sauce this weekend - sure it'd be better with duck, but I was using up stuff I had laying around, and quite frankly if you've got duck sitting in your fridge waiting for an excuse to be used you probably eat out at swanky restaurants all the time so you can afford to have delicious food going to waste in your fridge.
The sauce will make enough for two but, it was so full of plum goodness I had it all to myself. The measurements were estimates so you might want to lessen the sugar, or add more vinegar depending on your tolerance to sweet stuff.
So, you will need:
3 plums (ones with purple skins goddamit, if you're going to cook with plums use real ones)
150ml of water
100g of demerara sugar
2tbsp of port
2tbsp of rice wine vinegar
1tsp of ground cinnamon (don't try and be clever and add a 1/2in of cinnamon like I did because its an absolute bugger to fish out when it breaks apart and turns purple like everything else in the sauce)
2 shallots, chopped
2 mushrooms, chopped
1 chicken breast per person eating, cubed into 1 inch size chunks
1/2 cup of rice per person. (Basmati and Wild for the win) (and 1 cup of water per 1/2 cup of rice)
Black pepper (just because)
Bring the water to boil then pour in the sugar. Bring it down to a simmer and stir that concoction for about 5 mins. Don't be expecting syrup, the water will still be fluid at this stage - the plums will soon sort this out though.
Now chop your plums in half, take out the stone and put them skin side up into the sugary water.
Stir them about a bit, then throw in the port and cinnamon.
You can pretty much ignore this now, just go back to stir them and occasionally flip over the plums as and when you remember.
Set your rice cooking
Now in some olive oil brown the chicken cubes with some black pepper.
Once they're nice and brown put them to one side - don't worry about making an effort to keep them warm, just keep them by the hobs and they'll be fine.
Now fry your shallots and mushrooms, add some more olive oil if you need.
Once the shallots and mushrooms are browned to how you like them, put the chicken back into the pan and reduce the heat to as low as you can.
By this stage your plums should be breaking apart, mash them up with the business end of a wooden spoon and add the rice wine vinegar (taste test at this stage, if its too sweet add more vinegar until your happy, if you add too much vinegar however too bad, just pretend your eating pickled plums).
By now your chicken, shallots and mushrooms should be spot on, your rice should be nearly done, and your plums should be a nice thick sauce with nice clumps of plums.
Put the chicken and veg into the plum mixture and stir it up until its nicely coated.
Serve the chicken over the rice, giving yourself the majority of the sauce due to your kitchen based efforts.