Several boxes of home-grown organic tomatoes from our friends garden gave me the chance not only to preserve them in sauces, but to use these amazing tomatoes in cooking. Their exceptional quality and sweet flavour, together with some garlic and chilli, allowed to make simple chicken dish and elevate it to something very special. I made this dish several times now and it never disappointed us.
The list of ingredients is short and simple, as is the process of preparation. For the best flavour development I like to cook this dish for nearly 2 hours, but it is ready after 60-70 minutes.
- 6-8 chicken drumsticks (you can have them skin off)
- 1 leek
- 2 onions
- 1 red capsicum
- 700-900g organic tomatoes
- 3-5 garlic cloves
- 2 table spoons of olive oil (1 spoon if using skinless drumsticks without frying them)
- 1 medium heat chilli with seeds (for extra heat use 1/2 bird’s-eye chilli)
- 4-5 fresh thyme sticks
- good pinch fennel seeds
- salt and black pepper for seasoning
You might need to use 1 tea spoon of honey to balance acidity of the sauce if tomatoes are on a sour side.
- wash tomatoes, make two superficial cuts in their skin
- cover tomatoes with boiling water for 1 min
- discard the water and peel the skin from tomatoes
- cut or blend tomatoes (I cut some and blended the rest)
- heat 1 table spoon of olive oil in a deep casserole pan
- add fennel seeds
- slice leek and onions in semi circles
- gently fry them on medium heat for 5 min, season with salt and pepper
- if using drumsticks with skin on, set aside casserole pan with fried leek and onions and lightly fry chicken drumsticks on both sides, using another pan and the second spoon of olive oil
- return casserole dish with onions to medium heat, add tomatoes (cut or blended into a sauce)
- add red capsicum, cut in strips, add chicken drumsticks
- add sliced garlic and chilli, add fresh thyme
- add boiling water if drumsticks are not covered with sauce, add salt and pepper
- heat until boiling point, reduce the heat and cook simmering, loosely covered with lid for 1 hour
- check the seasoning and add more salt if needed, remember that the sauce will reduce with cooking and become more concentrated
- depending on liquid quantity you might want to cook for the second hour uncovered for the sauce to thicken
- still occasionally
- cover the dish with a lid and allow to rest for 20-40 min, depending how good your casserole pan is keeping the heat
- serve with fresh salad, zucchini noodles or any steamed vegetables
When using skinless chicken drumsticks, add all ingredients to fried leek and onions, including drumsticks without prior frying.
Before serving take chicken skin off and discard it. Be careful when taking drumsticks from the sauce, the meat will be falling from the bone.
We made the side salad from overgrown cucumbers and different types of cherry tomatoes from the same parcel of organic vegetables from our friends garden. You can find all about it here.