slate chicken-338Day two of the cookbook glut, and a warming supper of ras-al-hanout chicken with pearled spelt and cabbage from Nigel Slater’s Eat. I confess that whilst I’ve loved his ideas, I’ve not found this book very specific in its instructions. I suspect that the Twitter-inspired urge to keep the copy short and snappy has been at the expense of clarity. For example, if one were to, as instructed, add the powdered spices to the pan after quickly browning the chicken, the result would be spices burnt to a crisp. No matter, the combinations of flavour in most of the recipes, including this one, are an inspiration despite the gaps in the practicalities.

Inevitably, I tinker, using legs instead of the prescribed wings (who ever was sustained on chicken wings?). And if you’d like to make your own spice mix, here’s my recipe.

chicken-348Day Three is retro night. A light supper before seeing American Hustle is provided in suitably seventies style by Elizabeth David’s Parmigiana in her book, On Vegetables.

aubergine davidDo you like my retro grading?

It’s a stunner. Nothing to change. Nothing to add (well, except a little marjoram and pepper to the tomato sauce). Serve with garlic toast and a gutsy red.

aubergine david 2