Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Getting My Freekeh On. Not Really. I Just Wanted to Type That.

I was planning to roast a chicken for dinner last night, but upon flipping through Jerusalem, I realized that I had almost all the ingredients for Poached Chicken with Sweet Spiced Freekeh (pg 182-3). I was missing parsley, which I'm sure would have been a good addition, and freekeh, which is described as "a wonderfully aromatic smoked green cracked wheat." The instructions say that bulgur is a good substitute, so I decided to forge ahead with the recipe.

A lot of the recipes in this book look dauntingly involved, but this one was pretty hands-off. Put a chicken in a pot. Add cinnamon sticks, carrots, bay leaves, salt, onion, and parsley. Cover with water. Boil. For the bulgur, semi-caramelize thin-sliced onion for 15 minutes, then add bulgur, allspice, coriander, salt, pepper, and some of the cinnamon-spiced chicken broth. Simmer for 5 minutes, then let it sit covered for 20. Piece of cake. Then you brown sliced almonds in a bit of butter and pour on top. I didn't think the butter was necessary, though the nuts gave a nice crunch.

Because of the cinnamon, the chicken smelled incredible while it was poaching. Unfortunately, I didn't pick up on any of that flavor seeping into the meat. The chicken was falling off the bone by the time I pulled it out of its broth, but it tasted like any other poached chicken. Not a bad thing, but nothing remarkable. I prefer a roasted bird.

However, Matt and I both LOVED the bulgur. I was a little worried that it wouldn't cook properly, because the recipe's instructions were so very different from the instructions on the box (boil for 20 minutes), but it came out chewy and perfect. By adding a touch of cinnamon to store-bought broth, this is going to be a new standby side dish for me, sans poached chicken.
17 points???
Unfortunately, I started cooking this before figuring out the WW points. Holy mother of God. Even when I think a recipe looks reasonably healthy, it's not, in the world of WW. Perhaps my problem is that I don't think olive oil is a bad thing. Because of the almonds, 2 tb olive oil, and 1 tb butter, and even when cutting the serving size of the bulgur in half, this recipe comes in at a whopping 17 points per serving. Whaaaaaaat? It's a poached fricken chicken, whole grains, and mostly-healthy fats. No fair. Oh well.

Conclusion: chicken was okay, loved the bulgur. I'm counting this as 2 recipes, even though it's 1 in the book.

1 comment:

  1. 17 points? How can that be?
    We've been cooking with freekeh a bit lately - I like it. (And its super cheap at the hippie health food store - bonus)