I really envy those people that find cooking therapeutic/satisfying/fun or whatever. To me it’s just a chore. When I put my mind to it I’m not a bad cook, I just find it so dull and feel like my time could be better spent elsewhere, rather than in the kitchen, so I usually take the easy option and cobble together fail proof meals that take minutes rather than hours. Old faithfuls like cottage pie and spag bol.
But once in a while I will make a complicated Middle-Eastern rice dish or an Algerian favourite of my husband’s, such as the dish in the photo above. It’s my husband’s absolute fave and it actually tastes a lot better than it looks or sounds.
The main ingredients are 1 small onion, 3 or 4 cloves of garlic, 3 chicken pieces on the bone, 3 medium potatoes, 2 eggs and usually chick peas (but I didn’t have any in so I missed those out).
First of all the onion is chopped, the garlic is crushed and they are lightly fried in olive oil in a medium sized pan. Then the chicken is added to the pan for a couple of minutes, along with salt, pepper and ground mixed spice to taste. Water is then added – just enough to cover the chicken – bring to the boil and then simmer for around 20 minutes.
This is the weird part (well I think it is) – while that is going on peel the potatoes and cut into chips. Sprinkle with salt and then fry in oil (or use some other healthier method). Once cooked transfer to a frying pan and pour 2 whisked eggs over them. Then fry. (Yep, you are making a chip omelette. Told you it was weird.)
Once the chicken is cooked throw the chip omelette into the pan and sprinkle with fresh parsley. Once it’s dished up some fresh lemon juice really adds to the flavour.
I know it sounds odd to our sensible British pallets but it’s actually pretty tasty, honest. Calorie-wise we’re probably talking thousands though so be warned if you ever happen upon this dish. (Highly unlikely unless you’re planning a trip to Algeria!)