Bargain alert at the supermarket sales!
Age 16-18 I spent my Saturdays working in a supermarket for the grand sum of £3.33/hour. Living in a fairly large suburban town I was lucky to get a Saturday job, and whilst I moaned about it on a weekly basis, I was glad of the pocket money which helped pay for a big 2 week girlie holiday in ‘Tacky-Faliraki’, Rhodes, Greece after my A-levels…
Anyway the supermarket job had other bonuses – I worked in the fruit & veg aisle for the first few months and as a result gained the ability to recognise weird looking vegetables like sharon fruit, custard apple & physalis… I also had the job of walking round the section from 4pm on a Saturday afternoon reducing the items with the same-day sell by date. In those days supermarkets used to be closed on Sunday’s so there was often lots of bargains to be found. The same customers used to follow me round the store every week, watching as I placed the red reduced stickers onto the pre-packaged goods – nabbing the freshly reduced produce practically from my fingers.
This week I became one of those customers.
I happened to do my big shop this week towards the end of the day when the shop was almost closing, and was chuffed to find a very reduced pack of organic mini chicken fillets which went straight into my trolley (along with a 75% off free-range pork shoulder which is now in my freezer). Shopping near closing time is definitely a top tip if you’re ever short of cash one week, don’t want to compromise on quality of your food, and are happy to make a meal from whatever you find.
Since I don’t often buy chicken breast meat, often preferring chicken thighs for both flavour and price. I wanted to do something more interesting that just simply stir-frying. I had also thrown some olives into the trolley during the shop (along with about 10 tins of anchovies!) and decided to make up a sort of olive tapenade marinade. The end dish smelt divine and was really tasty – particularly as the chicken was really tender and moist. I’m sure the smaller fillets, oily marinade and low slow cooking time were to blame.
I served mine with some steamed kabocha squash puréed with macadamia oil & sprinkled with sumac, plus a few leaves of rocket & watercress. Though this chicken dish would go well with many other sides instead – go wild!
Ingredients (serves 2)
- 12 pitted green olives
- 1 Tablespoon capers
- Handful fresh basil (approx 20 leaves)
- Tablespoon chopped chives
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- Squeeze lemon juice
- Sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 350g organic mini chicken fillets
- Put the olives, capers, basil & chives into a mini food processor and pulse till combined. Next add in the oil and lemon and blend again till you get a loose paste. Add pinch salt and pepper, then taste to check seasoning is correct – adjusting if necessary.
- Toss the chicken in the olive paste while you warm up a non-stick frying pan on the hob.
- Lay the chicken in the hot pan, then turn the heat to medium-low. Cook for 10-12 minutes till lightly browned and cooked through. Make sure you turn every few minutes so it cooks evenly.
- Serve up with sides as desired.