As you know, I love to cook. But I am not a chef. What this means that I can pick great recipes with ingredients that I know will go well together, and I can follow the directions, without being intimidated. However, rarely do I make changes of my own and heaven forbid, I would NEVER mess with the ingredients (well, mostly never)! So recently, when a friend asked me to test a recipe, I jumped at the idea. How fun would that be – she supplies the recipe and all the ingredients, and I get to cook!
Our friend Chandra Schreck and her husband Mark, are raising chickens for sale. They are organic, with soy-free feed and no GMO ingredients. She raises them free range with no antibiotics or other unnatural additives. Wanting a better food source for her family, she decided to take this on, to the great benefit of all us around her.
The recipe is for Caveman Chicken, using coconut oil, salt and pepper. Very simple, very easy, and very very tasty! Chandra provided us with two ingredients – one of her chickens, as well as the coconut oil. This dish is definitely best done in a cast iron skillet, but can also be done in any other kind with minor modifications noted in the recipe.
We started heating up the skillet, and once hot, adding the coconut oil. (Funny note – as we were heating up the coconut, the girls came in from outside, and I said “who has on suntan oil!” It took a minute for Paul to laugh at me, and then tell me it was the coconut oil! Guess I spent a bit too much time in the sun with Hawaiian Tropic!). Once the coconut oil is sizzling, we placed the chicken into the pan in a single layer, and continued to brown the chicken for about 4 minutes.
We then placed the skillet directly into the oven and cooked the chicken for another 20 minutes. This is where the cast iron skillet really helped out. Because the skillet retains its heat, the chicken only needs to be browned on one side, and then continues to brown on the other side while in the oven.
The chicken came out absolutely delicious! It was crispy, and the coconut oil added a very nice tropical richness to the flavors. But one of the most surprising qualities for us was the chicken. First, the texture was firm and luscious. When asking Paul what he meant by luscious – he was refering to moistness and richness of the meat. The second difference was in the flavors. Not always big fans of chicken, and thinking of it more as a carrier for sauce, this chicken was delicious in its flavors, easily working with such light ingredients. After this experience, there will be no more store bought chicken in our household! The family loved this recipe, receiving 4 thumbs up! We will certainly be making this again and again. So wonderfully simple and so very delicious!
Oh…and this paired beautifully with both the Chardonnay and Melange! Very versatile dish!