Poached chicken

An ideal weekend lunch, this delicate poached chicken recipe from James Martin packs in lots of delicious French flavours.
By James Martin
Poached chicken
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Effort: medium


For the poached chicken

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 chicken crowns (legs and wings removed)
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 2-3 sprig thyme
  • handful stalks parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 onion, cut into wedges
  • 200 ml mead, or hydromel
  • pinch black peppercorns

For the salad

  • 3 tbsp olive oil, plus more for frying
  • 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp walnut oil
  • 200 g lamb's lettuce
  • handful walnuts, broken
  • 2 cooked beetroot
  • 250 g goats' cheese, crumbled
  • 150 g cookedsmokedlardons of bacon
  • crusty French bread, to serve


1. For the poached chicken, heat the oil in a large pan until hot. Add the chicken crowns, skin-side down, with the lemon halves, thyme sprigs, parsley stalks, bay leaves and onion wedges. Cook for 5-6 minutes to brown the skin on both sides.

2. Pour over the hydromel and water to cover. Season with a pinch of salt and a few black peppercorns. Bring to the boil, Cover with a lid and reduce the heat. Simmer gently for 20-25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.

3. Meanwhile, to make the salad dressing. Whisk together the olive oil, white wine vinegar and walnut oil. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Put the lambs lettuce into a large serving bowl and drizzle over the dressing. Add the broken walnuts and toss together.

5. Heat a little oil in a non-stick frying pan and sauté the beetroot for a few minutes with a grind of black pepper. Toss the beetroot into the salad and add the goats cheese and cooked bacon lardons. Toss together.

6. Cut the chicken breasts off the crown and serve alongside the salad with a nice wedge of crusty French bread.

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