Cypriot Chicken in Wine - with herbs and olives
This is a special recipe based on traditional Cypriot cuisine.
Cypriot cuisine, a wonderful part of the overall Mediterranean Cuisine and diet, is based on fresh whole foods, extra virgin olive oil, fresh fish and plenty of dried fruits, nuts, and herbs.
These combinations are what make Cypriot food stand apart from other cuisines - a delicate balance between sweet and salty, lemon and oil.
Ingredients for four people, it’ll need approximately two hours for preparation (including marination time) and fifty minutes for cooking.
And we’ll need for the marination sauce:
So to start, we wash and cut the chicken in eight pieces. We puree in a bowl the garlic the lemon peel, the salt and pepper, the rosemary, and the oregano. We puree them while gradually adding three tablespoons of olive oil.
With the puree mix, we apply it to the chicken pieces. And let it stay for a couple of hours. We then warm up in a shallow pot the rest of the olive oil, to then add the chicken pieces quickly into the pot for a quick browning. And then take them out of the pot.
In the same pot of olive oil we saute the shallots until they become brown. You put out the heat with the white wine (Vidal Blanc).
You add the tomato cubes and after two or three minutes you add the pieces of chicken. You’re cooking them in a very low temperature for a half an hour.
Finally, you add the olives and leave the food to cook for approximately ten more minutes.
We serve the dish warm, with an extra sprig of rosemary on top for an extra garnish, and with rice or boiled potatoes.
We chose Vidal Blanc, which is slightly sweet as a white wine, because we believe it helps balance out the saltiness of the olives, the slight bitterness of the oregano and rosemary, and the sourness of the lemon peel.
This way, the Vidal acts as an underlying binding flavor, that ties together all the other flavors into one smooth whole. It’s also a wine with fruit aromas, which given the light chicken meat works well for a summer dish.