I love asparagus and, while the relatively short season lasts, we eat it nearly every day. I try and use it in lots of different dishes. A couple of days ago I decided to combine it with in one dish with chicken and bacon – all work really well together and it’s easy!! You’ll find asparagus from Terry Lister, Jason and Fresh Gardens at the market. Marty of Bentru has great speck and bacon.
Ingredients (for 3-4)
1 whole chicken leg per person and two thighs, bone in, skin on or off
1 piece of speck cut into cubes (or bacon)
Bunch of asparagus, ends trimmed or snapped
4-5 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
1 small red onion, finely chopped or 2 shallots, finely chopped
4 tbsps brandy
2 cups chicken stock
3 tbsps crème fraiche
Piece of orange peel
2 bay leaves
Small sprig of thyme
Salt & pepper
Dust the chicken pieces in seasoned flour and brown both sides in a little oil in a heavy pan. Add the pieces of speck, red onion and garlic and brown a little. Add the brandy, make sure it heats up and then set it alight.
Once the flames subside add the stock, peel, bay and thyme. Simmer gently until the chicken is cooked – this should be about 35-40 minutes depending on the size of the chicken pieces. Check the seasoning.
Add the asparagus and cook for another 4-5 minutes or until the asparagus is as you like it. Take the chicken and asparagus out of the pan and keep warm. Remove the peel and herbs. Add the crème fraiche. Let the sauce boil briskly to reduce a little. Check the seasoning.
Serve the chicken, pour over some of the sauce and top with asparagus and more sauce. Good with baby roasted potatoes as they’re great for soaking up the juices (or any other potatoes).