Saturday, June 19, 2010

Braised Chicken Legs with Wild Tomatoes

Amber picked this meal out from one of our favorite websites,, and is based on a Jamie Oliver recipe.  She made a few modifications using a little lemon zest/ juice to add a sour citrus flavor, which was a very good call.  The tomatoes were heirloom cherry tomatoes of yellow, green, dark brownish purple, and red.  This is a simple one pot meal that was really great.  Garlic was cooked with the skin on, but if you plan to eat the whole garlic cloves, remove the skin.  This will definitely be a repeat meal in the Ward house.


4 - 6 chicken legs, jointed
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
a big bunch of fresh basil, leaves picked, stalks finely chopped
2 big handfuls of red and yellow cherry tomatoes, halved, and ripe plum tomatoes, quartered
1 whole bulb of garlic, broken up into cloves
1 fresh red chilli, finely chopped
olive oil
optional: 2 handfuls of new potatoes, scrubbed

Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Season your chicken and put them into a Dutch oven in one layer. Throw in all the basil leaves and stalks, then chuck in your tomatoes. Scatter the garlic cloves into the pan with the chopped chilli and drizzle over some olive oil. Mix around a bit, pushing the tomatoes underneath. Place in the oven for 1.5 hours, turning the tomatoes halfway through, until the chicken skin is crisp and the meat falls off the bone. If you fancy, you can add some drained cannellini beans or some sliced new potatoes to the pan and cook them with the chicken. Or you can serve the chicken with some simple mashed potato. Squeeze the garlic out of the skins before serving. You could even make it part of a pasta dish – remove the chicken meat from the bone and shred it, then toss into a bowl of linguini or spaghetti and serve at once.


  1. Showing my ignorance: What is a "wild tomatoe?"

  2. I had honestly never seen them before either. I knew about heirloom varieties, which are just domesticated versions of those found in the wild, but I just saw them by chance at Publix in the produce section near the cherry tomatoes and decided to give them a try. They are delicious and they come in colors you wouldn't expect from a tomato, including a purplish brown colored one that looks like a grape. Anyhow, they are very good and the color is cool.