Abruzzese Style Chicken with Barley

by Jason Roberts

Serves 4 - 5


1 whole chicken, cut into 4, leaving bone in (2 leg joints and 2 breast still on bone)
Salt flakes
1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
8 pearl onions or French shallots peeled
8 cloves garlic
6 long red chillies (low heat)
1 medium head of fennel, cut into largish chunks
1 medium sized head of fennel
2 small cans diced tomatoes
2 good pinches of saffron, soaked in a cup of water
3 small red peppers, roasted/ peeled and finely sliced
3 ripe tomatoes, finely diced
1 small bunch flat parsley, finely chopped
2-3 birds eye chilies, seeds removed and finely chopped
3 cups of boiled barley, seasoned with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and salt



Pre-heat skillet to a medium high heat.
Season chicken well with salt flakes and place into skillet, browning well on both sides (4-5 minutes), then remove and set a side.
Add in the garlic cloves, pearl onions, fennel and cook for a few moments to color.
Place the chicken back into the skillet and tip in the tin tomatoes, along with the saffron water and an additional 2 cups of water.
Cover with lid, reduce heat to medium to low and continue to cook for a further 40 minutes.
Mix together the red pepper, diced tomatoes, chopped chili and parsley.
After 40 minutes, tip the pepper and tomato mix over the top of the chicken, cover with lid, turn off and allow to steep for 10 minutes.
Remove chicken and separate the leg and thigh with a sharp knife, cut each breast into 3 pieces, and return back to sauce.
Adjust seasoning with more salt if needed followed by a splash of good EVOO.
Serve on top of boiled barley.

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