Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Boiled chicken and macaroni



This is a very important Cypriot dish, which, as far as I’m aware, in this precise form, is not served anywhere else in the world. Too bad for the rest of the world.

It is a dish which, in the old days, in the old country, was my grandmother’s standby to be served to an unexpected guest and would involve my poor mother being sent out to slaughter a family chicken – a task she does not remember executing fondly.

Ingredients
Chicken breast.
Grated halloumi cheese.
Dried mint.
Fresh lemon juice.
Macaroni (or spaghetti or penne).

Method
Slaughter your chicken.
Boil your breast.
In your broth, cook your macaroni.
Grate half a cup of halloumi.
Mix dried mint with your grated halloumi.
Serve macaroni straight out of the saucepan, with a little bit of broth.
Sprinkle your halloumi with mint over macaroni. Be generous with your halloumi – we’re talking half a cup of halloumi per person here.
Rip your cooked chicken breast to pieces.
Add chicken to macaroni.
Saturate your chicken with freshly squeezed lemon juice.
Eat. Enjoy. Have some more. Go on, you're insulting me.

7 comments:

Margaret said...

I wonder if your mother boils the whole chicken, and perhaps adds a few vegetables to the water? Celery perhaps? There's something green in the photo ...
I can imagine that it would be a very tasty dish.

There is hardly any flavour in the chicken breast itself, especially when boiled, so I think I'd be disappointed if I followed your instructions as they are. The taste comes from the bones and the brown meat ... as I'm sure your Mother will tell you :)

john akritas said...

If there were vegetables in the dish, then I would have said. The green is the mint. The trick with the chicken to make it more flavoursome is the fresh lemon juice. Boiling a whole chicken just to eat the breast would be wasteful.
I'd stick to egg and chips, if I were you. The day Greeks start taking tips from the English about how to cook will be a day close to the end of the world.

Margaret said...

Ah, but what eggs and chips they are. I guess there was no possible way that you were going to receive my comment without feeling it as a slight. You stick to your way of cooking it, and I'll adapt the receipe to my Anglo Saxon taste buds along the lines of these receipes:

http://www.eatgreektonight.com/recipe.cfm?TypeID=4&RecipeID=263

http://www.books-for-cooks.com/recipes/rc_foods_greekislands.html

Thank you for the inspiration, however. I'm off to the shops now for chicken and lemon ...

Margaret said...

And, along the way, I'll learn how to spell recipe ...

Margaret said...

It was, after all, delicious. I'm posting a photo on my blog ... I've kept the rest of the chicken to make a curry, like a good Anglo Saxon.

john akritas said...

I'm glad the dish turned out well. Lola B sounds like a very smart young lady.

Margaret said...

She is, but she also said, when she saw your reply to me, that there was no alternative but to return the aggression with aggression (as she would have done to her sister). Surrender would have been unthinkable. Birth order. Horrible, because there is nothing we can legally do to change it. I do have annoying habit of displaying older sister traits... Sorry.