Nothing beats a roast chicken – and this spruced-up Asian version makes for a nice variation of your standard Sunday roast bird. The soft yielding flesh of the plum works really with the crispy chicken, and the pair is set off nicely with a kick of chili, garlic and ginger.
At this time of year, plums from the supermarket are rather unripe and therefore need a little help to bring out their flavour – a teaspoon of sugar will do the trick.
8 chicken thighs and drumsticks (free-range)
3-5 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
3-5 fresh chilies
3 cloves of garlic
1 cm ginger
3-5 tablespoons soy sauce
1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius. Put the chicken thighs in a roasting tray and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast for about 30 minutes, turning once or twice.
2. Meanwhile, halve and deseed the chilies and cut into 1 cm strips. Slice the garlic cloves and grate or slice the ginger. When the chicken has roasted for 30 minutes, add the chilies, garlic and ginger to the tray and return to the oven for another 10 minutes.
3. Halve the plums and discard the stones. Add the plums to the roasting tray. Sprinkle the plums with sugar and trickle over the soy sauce, then return the tray to the oven for another 10-15 minutes, until the plums are soft and yielding their juices.
4. Baste the chicken and plums with the pan juices, then leave to rest in a warm place for about 10 minutes. Serve with rice and more soy sauce on the side, if you like.
Adapted from Hugh’s Three Good Things by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall