These Pomegranate Chicken Thighs with a quick kale and grain salad exemplify freestyle cooking at its best … going with the flow in the kitchen and not being too dependent on recipes.
I couldn’t resist popping in to share this dinner with you. It’s a little different from some of my other Freestyle Kitchen posts in that both the chicken and the salad are riffs on recipes already published here on Urban Cottage Life. So, not exactly cooking without a recipe … let’s say cooking from the memory of a recipe and adapting it for dinner at the end of a busy day.
I don’t always follow my own recipes to the letter. What you see pictured above is a weeknight dinner that turned out few a notches above ordinary. I based it on my Pomegranate Molasses-Glazed Chicken Thighs, but made it a little quicker and easier by mixing the pomegranate molasses, herbs and seasonings all together before pouring over the browned chicken, and then putting the pan into the oven to finish cooking. Glazing the chicken two or three times during the roasting phase is key to getting that burnished, sticky finish that’s so appealing … finger-licking good, you might say!
The kale salad is based on my Parsley and Kale Salad with Pomegranate, and I made it while the chicken was in the oven. This time I massaged the chopped kale with salt to make it more tender, and then gave it a good rinse before adding the olive oil and lemon. There’s some minced shallot in there too, and I also added nutrition via a bag (one cup) of frozen pre-cooked grains that I gently warmed through.
Plating the meal in my oval serving dish made it look even more special, and the scattering of sesame seeds on the chicken and pomegranate arils on the salad added a festive air (not to mention great flavour).
This photograph is one of my most popular on Instagram, and more than one commenter said it reminded them of the holidays. Who says a regular weeknight dinner can’t be a celebration in itself!