chicken with pear & rosemary potatoes

serves 2 people

250g chicken leg meat, cubed
100ml kefir or good quality live yoghurt
1 unwaxed lemon, zested
1 small garlic clove, grated
Olive oil
2 shallots, peeled and finely diced
2 ripe pears, weight 320g
30g demerara sugar
30ml red wine vinegar
500g roasting potatoes, such as king edward, wilja or nicola, washed
3 sprigs rosemary, picked and roughly chopped
50g breadcrumbs
Sunflower oil
1 oak leaf lettuce, washed

In a large bowl combine the chicken pieces, kefir, lemon zest and grated garlic, cover and set aside fora minimum of 30 minutes, preferably overnight.

Heat the oven to 200C fan (220C non-fan).

Place a pan over a low heat and add I tbsp olive oil, shallots and tsp salt. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes until the shallots are soft.

Meanwhile peel, halve and core the pears and cut into 1cm dice. Set the shallot pan over a medium heat and add the sugar, vinegar, 2 tbsp water and pear. Stir, cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes until the sauce is viscous and the pear soft.

Quarter the potatoes into wedges. Place in a pan, cover with cold water and add 1 tbsp salt. Bring to the boil, reduce to a rolling boil and cook for 5 minutes. Drain then return to the pan with ½ tsp salt, cover and gently heat for 2-3 minutes. Shake the pan lightly.

Pour 2 tbsp olive oil onto a roasting tray and place in the oven for 2 minutes. Carefully and quickly add the wedges, coating each in the hot oil. Return the tray to the oven for 35-40 minutes, turning the wedges after 20 minutes. In the last minutes, scatter over the rosemary.

Meanwhile, season the breadcrumbs with a generous pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper and place on a tray. Drain the chicken pieces from the kefir and roll them in the crumbs.

Heat 1½ tbsp sunflower oil in a medium-large pan over a high heat. Once it begins to smoke, reduce the heat to medium.

Lower in half of the crumbed chicken, making sure not to overcrowd the pan as it will reduce the oil temperature and prevent each piece from becoming crisp. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side or until crisp, evenly golden and cooked through.

Lift the chicken from the oil with a slotted spoon and set aside on a warm plate lined with kitchen paper while cooking the rest. Serve hot, with the potato wedges, plenty of relish and a few lettuce leaves that have been dressed with the juice of the zested lemon, salt and good-quality olive oil to coat the leaves lightly.