A sweet and savoury recipe for Nectarine and Lemon Chicken with pilaf rice

80ml olive oil
4 chicken legs
5 garlic cloves
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground chili
2 onions, diced
1 lemon, finely grated rind and juice
800ml hot chicken stock
2 South African nectarines (or peaches), halved, pitted and cut into wedges
20g butter
2 cinnamon sticks
2 cardamom pods, split in half
2 fresh bay leaves
300g long-grain rice, rinsed
Parsley to serve

How to
Preheat oven to 200ºC, fan 180ºC, gas mark 6

Heat 20ml oil in a frying pan, season chicken and sauté over high heat until golden (3-5 minutes). Set aside

Process garlic, ground spices and half the onion in a food processor until finely chopped.

Heat 40ml oil in a flameproof casserole dish, add onion mixture and sauté until fragrant (2-3 minutes), then add lemon juice, 300ml stock and chicken, season to taste and stir to combine

Scatter nectarines over the chicken and spoon a little cooking liquid over the nectarines.

Cover, bring to the simmer and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Remove lid and cook over medium heat until chicken is cooked through and the nectarines are tender (5-10 minutes)

Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a separate flameproof casserole dish, add butter, remaining spices and remaining onion and stir over medium heat until starting to caramelize (5 minutes)

Add rice, stir to coat, and add remaining stock. Season to taste, bring to the simmer, then cover and bake until rice is cooked (15 minutes)

Stir through lemon rind and serve with the nectarine chicken, scattered with parsley

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Recipe provided by Beautiful Country, Beautiful Fruit. Recipe created by Reuben Riffel, head chef at Reuben’s Restaurant, Franschhoek, South Africa