Thursday, 27 September 2012

Charlie Sanders: Garlic Chicken Pasta

Charlie Sanders is a Sheffield-based comedian who is involved with The Sheffield Comedy Revue and manages the sketch group Staple/face. This is not the kind of blog that would make a joke about the surname of the author and chicken, but if it was, I'd have a fucking good one.

This is my mum's recipe. Cooking it today so I could attempt to write a recipe made me realise how much it must have really pissed her off to have me and my sister nagging her to make it all the time, because it's a  fucking pain in the arse to cook.  It involves two ingredients which are both amongst my favourite to eat and my least favourite to deal with while cooking (spring onion and tagliatelle). I actually fucked it up because I was  thinking of what jokes I was going to put in this blog when I was making it. It was still edible though but I couldn't remember any of the jokes. Just pretend I put some in there. Don't let me put you off making it though, it is by FAR my favourite thing ever and hopefully it'll become yours too!

What you'll need:
Chicken breast
Olive oil - er, whatever's the right one for frying with? A tablespoon of that.
Butter - about an ounce
Cracked black pepper
Plain flour
Garlic (two cloves)
Spring onions
Closed cup mushrooms

Some notes about quantities: I make this for one person, so just guess. Five tagliatelle nests for one very hungry  person worked for me quite well. I was tempted to use way more garlic, because although we don't have a family motto I'm pretty sure if we did it would be 'no, seriously, there is no such thing as too much garlic'. Basically, if
vampires were real, the Sanders clan would evolve into super unbeatable vampires because of their immunity to garlic. So yeah, let's all hope that doesn't happen. Two cloves were enough for me though. I also used four spring onions and three mushrooms. I made heaps, but I was very hungry, so there's that.


Dice the chicken. You need biggish chunks. Make them even so they cook at roughly the same time, not doing that dicks everything up MASSIVELY.
Mix some plain flour and some black pepper. Toss the chicken in it, coat it nice and thoroughly.
Slice the spring onion into strips. Not too thin though! I hate this part and got my housemate to do it for me. Slice the mushroom as well, and crush the garlic.
While you're doing this put the kettle on to boil. Or, in my case, forget to boil the kettle while you're doing the preparation, and put it on to boil after you've prepared the ingredients while you nip out for a crafty smoke.

Get either a wok or a stir fry pan and put the tablespoon of olive oil in as well as an ounce and a bit (highly precise, that's me) of butter. Let that melt into a mixture and put the pasta on to cook while you're doing that, then LIGHTLY fry the garlic.When that's fried enough (don't let it go brown), put the coated chicken in. At about
this point you start to get really, really fucking hungry because it's started smelling really, really fucking good. If you're anything like me you will have probably eaten some raw ingredients already, but that is kind of a gross habit, so maybe you haven't. I don't know.

Cook the chicken pretty damn thoroughly, and keep stirring throughout. At about this point - before it's started going golden, which is the end result you want - I take the biggest chunk of chicken and cut through it to check I won't get food poisoning. If it's cooked enough, put the mushrooms in and cook those for a few minutes, then finish with adding the spring onions for a few minutes. You need to keep stirring so everything's cooked evenly. When it looks ready and the chicken is all golden and the spring onion is not raw, it's done! Pour the (cooked) tagliatelle into the pan where you've cooked the chicken and stir thoroughly.

Feel so smug about having made some decent food that you accidentally leave all the hobs on and your house burns down while you sleep. Just kidding. Remember to turn the hobs off, don't be a shit.

That's pretty much it. By the way, when you're done, the chicken should be nice and golden. Don't overcook it, it's shit when it's overcooked and my mum would probably do what the living do when the dead spin in their graves. I don't know what the equivalent is. Oh, and let me know if you manage to pull this one off, and cook it for me as payment for me giving you such a great recipe, because I'm sodding TERRIBLE at cooking.


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