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Head chef at The Packhorse in Moulton, Suffolk, shares a recipe created by a fellow chef

For this month’s column were going to talk about the humble chicken. . . Whether it be just a simple chicken roast or curry or the dish we currently have on our menu, a chicken supreme, with a chorizo, butter bean and oyster mushroom fricassee, the choices are incredible.

Chicken has always been a staple in my diet. It’s relatively low fat, versatile and generally tasty. Now I know I said relatively low in fat and it is, however, I think one of my favourite naughty treats has to be a good chicken wing. I’m not talking the greasy spicy ones you get at 1am on the way home from a day down at the pub, I’m talking a proper well-coated and well looked after chicken wing. . . can’t beat them.

As much as I’d love to take credit for this dish I can’t, this dish came from one of our chefs, Mollie. She has been on a inter-company course based around her development as a chef and one of the things they got to do was go on an away day to Houghton Hall, which I spoke about in my last article. They were given six Norfolk Black chickens and asked by our head of food to come up with a dish to be included on our specials menu.

Mollie's chicken supreme, with a chorizo, butter bean and oyster mushroom fricassee
Mollie's chicken supreme, with a chorizo, butter bean and oyster mushroom fricassee

When Mollie came back with the chickens she was a little stumped as to what to do and we got to work writing her ideas down and talking through the practicality of them for a restaurant service. Like I’ve spoken about many times before, we want to reduce our waste as much as we can, so all I said to Mollie was to use the whole of the chicken in the dish. So when she decided it was going to be the dish I mentioned above we decided what we’d do with the rest of the chicken having taken the breasts off.

Super simple, we took the legs off to confit them down to put through the fricassee, and we roasted the carcass and turned that into a tasty chicken stock to reduce our fricassee. . .and just like that we’d used all the chicken.

We put this on the menu as a special on a Friday night, it usually being one of the busiest nights. We presumed we’d sell a couple on the Friday and then put it on the menu again on Saturday and sell the rest. It sold out within an hour and a half or something like that. I was shocked, not because I didn’t like
the dish, but I think none of us expected it to be that popular. Mollie was buzzing naturally, so we spoke after service and I said I’d make it a dish on the new menu and that’s what we’ve done. We put it on the menu in February and since then its continued to be one of our best sellers.

Now the dish has been on the menu for four weeks or so, we have made a couple of small adjustments to keep it on for the spring menu, one of which is adding one of every chefs favourite ingredients, wild garlic. It’s growing again and my word is it unreal. We decided to make an oil out of it to dress the dish, and we’ll throw a couple leaves in there just for maximum flavour.

This dish is also a fantastic one you can try at home, and I think out of all the columns I’ve written this will be the easiest to follow and probably a favourite in your households. So that takes me nicely into the recipe.

As always, please let me know your thoughts. I hope you all have a fantastic Easter and I look forward to seeing you next month. Take it easy.


Ingredients: Serves 2

1 chicken breast/supreme per person

200g chorizo, diced

500g oyster mushrooms

250g butter beans

1 shallot, finely diced

1 garlic clove

1ltr of chicken stock

100ml double cream

10g butter

1 bunch of parsley

Wild garlic (your discretion)

Maldon sea salt

40ml white wine


Start by sweating down your diced chorizo, you want to cook this right down to get all that beautiful chorizo oil and flavour out - when you think it’s done cook it for a little longer, the colour you want is a
deep red. Then add 10ml of the white wine to de-glaze the pan, let this cook out which will happen quickly, then add the shallots and garlic, sweat these down till they’re translucent. I always add a pinch of salt
at this point, not a lot but enough to start breaking down the ingredients and realising their natural sugars and waters.

Once sweated down, add the butter beans and oyster mushrooms and again cook down, then add the rest of the wine and de-glaze the pan before adding half the amount of stock and reduce by half.

While you wait for it to reduce, cook the chicken breast, skin side down in a hot pan with a little bit of butter for colour - it should take roughly 15 minutes in an oven at 180 after being pan fried.

Once the fricassee is looking like its coming together, add a little more stock and some double cream until it looks nice and saucy. Finish with the chopped parsley and wild garlic if you have any, and tuck in.

Jordan Ryan is head chef at The Weeping Willow,

39 Bury Road, Barrow Hill, Barrow, Bury Saint Edmunds IP29 5AB

Call 01284 771881

See www.theweepingwillow.co.uk