Cooking for myself has always been a bit of a guilty pleasure. Don’t get me wrong I love cooking for other people but there is something about preparing a meal from scratch, with no one watching or passing comment that makes the whole process incredibly relaxing.
As it happened, a few nights ago I got the chance to satisfy this need. The music went up and the oven gloves went on. Chicken is my favourite meat because of its versatility, so it was my starting point for my meal. I was in the mood to indulge. Something garlicky and oozing with cheese. It had to be kiev. All crunchy on the outside and gooey in the middle. Perfect.
Potatoes are amazing. The ultimate comfort food and they go with pretty much anything.
It’s time to reveal my secret weapon in recipe form. CRASHED POTATOES.
I found these on a recipe blog about two years ago. Since then they’ve become more and more popular. And so they should be. Crashed potatoes are an interesting take on roast potatoes, with a little more seasoning and not so much fat. Try them once and you’ll find it hard to do potatoes any other way.
Without further ado, my indulgent meal for one;
Baked Chicken Kiev with Crashed Potatoes
Chicken stuffing (enough for one chicken breast)
- 1 spring onion
- A small handful of grated cheddar cheese
- 1-2 tablespoon of butter
- A clove of Garlic
- 1 teaspoon of Parsley
- White pepper
Coating (I can’t be exact on the amount as chicken breasts vary greatly in size but how ever much breadcrumbs you need, you’ll need a 5th as much parmesan)
- Black pepper
- A dash of milk
- 1 egg
First make up your stuffing mix. Put everything in a bowl and mash together with a fork.
Prepare your plates/bowls for coating the chicken. Crack the egg into the bowl and whisk in the salt, pepper and milk. On a plate mix the breadcrumbs and parmesan and spread it all out. Also have a greased baking tray ready for the coated chicken.
Next, take your chicken and cut a small slit of about 5cm into the chunkiest part of the breast wiggle it about a bit to make a good cavity, make sure the knife goes about halfway down without making any other holes on the way.
Now comes the fun bit. Take bits of your stuffing and push them into the slit until it’s all gone. You can secure the hole with a cocktail stick if you don’t want anything to escape but IMO the site of the cheese oozing out of the chicken as you take it out of the oven makes it even more tantalising.
First dip and roll the chicken about in the egg wash. Then transfer onto the breadcrumbs, gently rolling until the chicken is completely coated, you may want to sprinkle some extra onto the nooks and crannies that may be lacking. Put this straight onto the baking tray.
The chicken needs to be cooked at 200C for about 20 minutes. The outside should be crispy and of course the juice of the chicken should run clear and the meat should be opaque and white. Please make sure before you dig in, I wouldn’t want any upset tums.
- 1-2 medium sized potatoes (any kind that is good for baking/roasting)
- Mixed Herbs
- Black pepper
- Olive Oil
- Vegetable/Sunflower Oil
Clean the potatoes and cut into quarters, remember to leave the skins on as that’s where all the goodness lives.
Boil them in salted water until they are soft, this should take about 10-12 minutes. Once they’re done drain them and transfer to an oiled baking tray. Take the bottom of a jar or a fork and gently press each one until it just cracks and flattens. Season with mixed herbs, salt and pepper then drizzle with a decent slosh of olive oil (for flavour) and then vegetable oil (for crispness).
Place in a 210-220C oven for about 20 minutes (or if you’re doing them at the same time as the chicken just leave them in a bit longer), turning the potatoes half way through. When they’re done the edges, especially the skins, should be crispy and browned.
Sit down with a glass of wine or even just a good cuppa and enjoy peace, quiet and your tasty meal for one.