Sun dried tomatoes-shredded drumsticks-fresh tomato-potato-onion hash
I can already tell this is going to be such a fun post! OK, for starters, the image above is not what I cooked, it’s the closest match to what I made, although not quite nearly close enough. Still, could not have a blog post without a pic, that’s just cruel! 🙂
I chose the image above because it uses drumsticks and sun-dried tomatoes. But the likeness ends there. If you follow my recipe (or some version of it, you will see how different it ends up looking).
A little backup and disclaimer (?) I love eating fresh food, but am still adjusting to our new home where it’s not always readily available. so what to do when fresh food lacks? make up for it by the flavors of the preserved!
Why Drumsticks? I love leg meat, they’re cheap and can be used for several recipes at once. To folks who say you’re just paying for skin and bones: not if you have the time and inclination to really use what you bought.
So, I boiled five drumsticks until almost done, not quite. Some blood might still be oozing. I know, it sounds gross, but it works, right, because you don’t overcook your meat, and it stays tender through the rest of the cooking process.
While the chicken is boiling, cube your potatoes. If you’re going to eat soon, set up a stock pot to boil pasta. Or not. serve with whatever starch you prefer, or not. I mean, you already have potatoes in there, so all you may need is a salad. I would have put some asparagus in there but did not have any. My potatoes were getting old, and I wanted to use them up. They had traveled with me from CA in my car and looked a little older than this pic below, so I did peel them (usually I don’t).
I saved the stock for soup that I made the following day. Skim any foam on top and strain if you are a stickler for a smooth broth. I like the little grainy bits left over during the boiling process (and also lazy about straining and having to clean a greasy strainer later).
When the meat has had some time to rest (30 minutes), remove the skins from the drumsticks. Too fatty for my liking, although they can be really good when properly fried. Not this time. Then remove the meat from the bones in shreds with the help of a fork and tongs to hold the drumstick steady as you work. The shreds are best achieved if you work with your hands, my favorite and ultimate tool for executing almost every task in the kitchen. You may need to let the meat cool some more if you have sensitive skin.
Toss the bones back into the saved broth for extracting more goodness out of them. Freeze until ready to make soup.
Sun dried tomatoes usually come preserved in olive oil so i didn’t need to use any other grease! My sun dried tomatoes are not red, they have turned black over time but have stayed fresh and aged well in the refrigerator. Two heaping tablespoons of these in a sauté pan, skillet, whatever you like, on low heat. As they warm up and soften, they will release more oil and flavor.
At this point, add your cubed, sliced, tournéed, etc., potatoes. I used three small white potatoes since that’s all i had. Keep the heat low to medium. season potatoes with salt and pepper. let them brown as you prep the next item.
One large fresh beef tomato cubed into about the same size as the potato. Mine looked like this:
Add a third of it to the pan and save the rest for last. When I cook on low to medium heat, I don’t need to add any water for the potatoes to cook and love the results. I also like to keep just a little crunch in my potato (for a change). so whenever you think the potatoes are almost done, add the shredded meat, and let it combine well with the rest of the stuff.
Take a vidalia onion (or red onion) –my favorites–and slice half moon rings to match the chicken shape. I add this at the end and don’t cook it much so it’s still crunchy. You may not like this as it still tastes oniony. Add earlier if you prefer a more caramalized version. I have tons of these at home and they last forever if you keep them in a cool, dry place (not in the refrigerator).
Now add the balance of tomatoes, they stay fresh and really add to the dégustation.
Then your favorite spices. Whatever you’re craving that day. For me it was ground cumin powder, ground coriander, tons of paprika, sea salt, and liberal amounts of pepper. Red chili pepper flakes would be awesome. So would a good drizzle of honey, but I tried to exercise moderation for a weekday meal!
So what did I have at the end?
the tang and sweet taste of the sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil
the crunch of the onions, potatoes, and tomatoes (my effort to restore freshness in the meal)
the chicken? well, gotta get your protein in somehow and the slow cooking does make a leg tasty.
Bonus? I found this interesting recipe puzzler while looking for the pic I used on the top of the page.
Thanks for reading, I had so much fun putting this together! Bon appétit!