Chicken and Pistachios Wrapped in Prosciutto
When you make food at home, it often is not "even", and has a rustic look that you do not see in bought meals from the supermarket. This is particularly so when I make pastry as my pastry is rarely even. However having jagged edges or being uneven to my mind, makes it look more authentic.
This recipe is an authentic one, and one you will be praised for serving up to the most discerning guest at your dinner table.
Of course, you can make it just for the family as well, which is what I did but either way, it will taste good and look brilliant. I would term it a recipe that will impress!
Although pistachios are expensive you can find small shops that sell things loose rather than having to buy a whole packet, so if you do not usually use pistachios, find one of these shops and just buy the amount you need for this recipe. Pistachios are actually a fruit from an evergreen tree. You could perhaps substitute pine nuts (though these are also expensive), almonds, hazelnuts, or even cashews, however I prefer pistachios.
The other thing about pistachios in this recipe is that they have that "green" colour in them and this helps make the colours of this meal look even better! So, my lovelies, whichever one you choose, it will work out, however I prefer pistachios for this particular recipe.
The ingredients are a bit unusual used together, and this recipe IS a bit fiddly, however the finished product is well worth the extra effort it takes it make it.
This recipe uses a mixture of both minced and chopped chicken, and it is probably called a terrine, if you want to be politically correct!
Another thing I sometimes do, is I mince my own chicken - there are a few reasons I do this - and the main one is that then I can ensure I do not put any fat into it. When you buy a ready minced product, and particularly meat, you do not really know what they have put into it, and although I say this often, it is very true. I do not think the butchers would bother cutting off all the fat, and indeed, sometimes it is better to leave a little bit on, however mincing the chicken is such an easy process either with a mincer attachment, or a processor, that if I am not in a hurry, I would prefer to do it myself.
However, on saying that, if you ARE in a hurry or have no attachments, just buy minced chicken from the supermarket or butcher.
I served this with the leftovers of my Winter Potato salad, which I heated up slightly and this saved me making vegetables or salad separately.
Preparation Time: 35 minutes (plus 3 hours in fridge)
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Makes: 4-6 servings
10 slices of prosciutto (about 130 g)
450 g chicken thigh fillets
450 g chicken breasts
30 g unsalted pistachios, chopped
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp lemon zest
¼ cup chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 200°C or 190°C if your oven is fan forced. Line a loaf pan 20 cm x 8 cm, with baking paper, extending the baking paper over the side of the long sides of the tin.
Line the base and the long sides with the prosciutto.
Chop all the chicken into 2 cm pieces.
Finely mince half of the chicken (or buy half minced).
Combine the chicken mince, the chopped chicken, the mustard and pistachios together.
Add the parsley and the lemon zest to this mixture. Next add salt and pepper, and again, mix this all up well.
Press this chicken mixture into the prepared prosciutto lined loaf tin.
Fold the prosciutto and the baking paper over to cover the chicken mixture, and then cover it tightly with foil.
Bake the terrine for 1 hour.
Drain the liquid from the pan, allow it to cool, then weigh it down with another dish with cans placed on top. Put it in the fridge for 3 hours.
Turn out the terrine onto a plate, slice thickly, and serve.
Serve with vegetables or salad of your choice, or as I have done, with a potato salad. This is great on a warm summer night, and also good for a buffet style meal, or even lunch boxes for the next few days.
It is also good to make ahead, thus leaving you little work on the day you have visitors, which is always a good idea!