My Husband and I went to dinner at a local restaurant called Wil & Sons and I was really impressed with their menu. A rendition of this chicken with creamed corn dish immediately caught my eye and I must admit, creamed corn has been on my mind lately. I ordered the dish and it inspired me to come up with this sort of, kind of Mexican version that I literally made up as I went along. I didn’t even really have a Mexican version in mind, I just had a bunch of ingredients in the fridge and it naturally evolved. I love it when I cook like this, I get really excited and so happy when it all works out and we sit down at the table and everyone ooh’s and aah’s. Food really is one of life’s greatest pleasures, isn’t it?
Prep time: 20 Minutes Cooking time: 1 Hour $$ Medium Budget
8 Chicken thigh cutlets, skin on and bone in
1 tbs of smoked paprika
1 tsp of sea salt
1 tsp of dried oregano
2 tbs of olive oil
3 corn cobs, husks removed
8 broccolini stalks, halved lengthways and blanched in boiling water for 1 minute
1 ripe avocado, halved, peeled and sliced
3 spring onions, white part finely sliced, green part sliced diagonally for garnish
1 cup of coriander leaves
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
4 coriander stalks finely sliced
100ml of pure cream
Sea salt and cracked pepper
A squeeze of lime
Lime wedges and pickled jalapeno slices to garnish
Preheat the oven to 200°C
In a shallow dish, combine the smoked paprika, salt, oregano and oil. Place the thigh cutlets in the dish and use your hands to rub the mixture right into the chicken pieces. It is a tad messy but it is the best way and you can wash your hands.
Heat a large fry pan and add a little more oil. Place the thighs in the pan, skin side down and sear for a minute or so until the skin is slightly blackened and then turn to do the other side. You may need to do this in batches and if your pan is oven proof you can just transfer it straight to the oven, if not, place the seared thigh cutlets on a lined baking tray. Bake the thighs in the oven for approximately 50 minutes or until the juices run clear when pierced with a skewer. This skin should be deliciously crispy when cooked.
Place the coriander leaves and the green parts of the spring onion in a bowl of iced water and pop them in the fridge until you are ready to garnish. Drain well before using.
Heat a griddle pan or BBQ grill. Season the corn with salt and pepper and cook on all sides until tender and slightly charred ( a few minutes on all sides). Remove when cooked to cool slightly before running your knife down the sides of the corn cobs, as close as you can to the centre so the corn comes off in largish chunks.
Heat a small saucepan and add a little oil. Gently fry the garlic and coriander stalks for approximately 1 minute and then add about two thirds of the charred corn and the cream. Allow the mixture to come to a simmer and reduce the cream for 3-4 minutes. Use a stick blender to cream the corn but don’t over cream it, a little texture is nice. Season with salt and pepper and add the white part of the spring onion, stirring it through and allowing it to cook for a couple of minutes.
Cook the blanched broccolini stalks on a hot BBQ grill or griddle pan, just before serving.
To assemble the dish, divide the creamed corn between 4 serving plates by placing a good sized dollop in the centre. Use the back of the spoon to make a bit of a swoosh and then top with the broccolini stalks. Scatter the remaining charred corn kernels around the plate and pile two chicken thighs per person on top. Pile on the spring onion and coriander garnish and fan the avocado slices to the side. Use any pan juices from the chicken to drizzle over the dishes and garnish with lime wedges and a few pickled jalapeño slices.