Success? Sure, why not?
Okay, that was a bit of down-trodden 4-word review. The chicken was definitely a feast for the eyes. It was also ample in proportions. I think the same can be done with a healthier half-breast-per-serve. I also found the end result quite salty. Was there errors on my part that would contibute to this? Probably. So what went wrong?
To start, I couldn’t find pancetta. I can never find it, so I always substitute prosciutto. I wonder if that makes it more salty? I just assumed they were both cured meats & it would matter much. One day, I will be enlightened. I also forgot to buy wine. Yeah. Big fail! But I used one of our recent purchases from a trip to Margaret River. I’d have to say, using the Juniper Estate 2009 Semillon was a total waste. I couldn’t remember which bottles were the awesome ones & which were the average ones. This one was deliciously awesome. It’s really smooth, and creamy (okay wine buffs, it’s probably not that to you, but my ill-educated palate says it is) & saying it is much too nice to waste on a gravy is a total understatement. Never. Again.
But there were good parts! The chicken was (salty, but) flavoured nicely from the simple marinade. I rarely marinade anything except seafood, but this will have to change. It was also really moist still. I have a habit of cooking chicken to a desert-like state where a ladle of gravy is require to resurrect the bird. Not this time! Again, the serving size is far too big for normal people. Even Tomo, who works in the mining industry, was scarcely able to finish it. But he did out of manly pride. I would down-size the portions to one breast between two people. I did add a simple salad to the plates, but I require more than a sprinkling of green beans to complete the veggie section of my meals.
I enjoyed taking my time cooking the chicken. I treated the rolled up poultry with tenderness so I didn’t ruin the meaty wrap as I fried it in the pan. Oh, and I didn’t use an oven-proof frypan. I used my scanpan stove-proof roasting dish instead. It made more sense to me.
The breadcrumb sprinkle was delightful! I didn’t anticipate it being so freshly flavoured. It sogged as soon as it looked at the gravy, but the thought is there. I sprinkled it across the salad, which is a great place for it. Be liberal with it because it would really make a simple lunch salad pop. There was also an absolute bucket load of it left over. I tried to use it in a ‘bread crumb pasta’ the next day & wasn’t very successful. That speaks more of my pasta skills than the crumbs.
And the gravy was as yum as to be be expected, if a little salty. Where did all these salty flavours come from?!?! The only thing I actually added salt to was the crumbs, and by themselves, weren’t salty. One of the great cullinary mysteries of my kitchen.
Although my plates were crouded with green leafies, I think my plating looked better than the magazine photo. Sorry, but that look liked it was dropped on the bench. Actually, looking at their picture now, I can see disgarded cooking twine in the corner. Clearly that must be why mine was salty… twine readily draws salt from over salted dishes… Actually – it doesn’t. I’m just being cheeky. I’ve tried trussing wrapped chicken in twine before & it was frustrating to say the least. I’m glad I went for the glad-wrap option.
I’d say I might attempt this again because it was really tasty (beyond the salt). I’d like to serve it for friends, but I need one more practise to work out this salt issue. Calling it ‘Lefroy Salt Lake Chicken’ won’t fool anyone for long.
Here’s a couple of photos now that I’ve found my memory card: