We love eating as a family, with the kids. There’s little that gives me more satisfaction than seeing my kids eat the food I’ve made for them. Thankfully Maya is a great eater (read pig) and Asher looks to be heading the same way so, more often than not, they both gratefully throw the food down their necks.
Having said that, sometimes it’s lovely to be able to sit and eat dinner in peace, after they’re both tucked up in bed. No flying food, no faces and hands to mop up, no light little fingers stealing food off our plates. We’re able to take our time and really enjoy our meal. Tonight was one of those nights.
This is a really quick meal (30 minutes or so), as well as incredibly tasty and wholesome. Quick is important in our house – we’re usually either rushing to get dinner served early, before the kids go to bed, or we’re coming downstairs hungry after a gruelling bedtime ordeal. It’s from Jamie Oliver’s Superfood: Family Classics, which I’d highly recommend; it’s chock full of healthy, tasty and usually quick recipes to feed the whole family. And he’s not paid me to say that, honest.
A food processor or blender is crucial when time is of the essence, and this recipe calls for a lot of blending. Firstly, blitz a wholemeal pitta bread into breadcrumbs and throw into a shallow bowl or tray. Then put the leaves of half a bunch of basil into the blender along with an egg, the zest and juice of a lemon, a clove of garlic and a good grating of parmesan. Cut a couple of chicken breasts into strips, put into a bowl and cover with the basil and egg mixture. Mix it all together, making sure all the chicken is nicely coated and then, one by one, roll the chicken strips in the breadcrumbs to get a nice coating, and put onto a baking tray. Put into the oven at 200° for 15-20 minutes, depending on how thick or thin you’ve made your goujons.
While they’re cooking, blend the other half of the bunch of basil with four tablespoons of greek yoghurt and the flesh of a ripe avocado.
When time is up on the chicken, serve on plates with the basil and avocado sauce (add a few drops of tabasco and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil when on the plate), some little gem lettuce leaves, a handful of halved cherry tomatoes and a lightly toasted pitta bread or two.
The flavours in this will knock your socks off, trust me!