Prep Cook Serves 15 min 30 min 4
1.6–1.8kg chicken, jointed, or 4 legs, split into thighs and drumsticks
3 tbsp vegetable oil or light olive oil
1 small onion, peeled and thinly sliced
6 garlic cloves, squashed (skin on)
10 sprigs thyme Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
300g large-leaf spinach, washed and stalks finely chopped
1 x 600g jar butter beans (or 400g cooked butter beans, plus 200ml cooking liquor) Crusty bread, to serve You will need a large, heavy-based frying pan, skillet or casserole dish.
Lay the chicken pieces on a plate, season with salt and leave for five to 10 minutes.
Put the pan on a medium-high heat and add the oil. Lay the chicken skin side down in the pan and leave to fry for 15 minutes. After eight minutes, slot the sliced onion and garlic in and around the chicken. (If using a whole bird, fry only the thigh and leg pieces to begin with, adding the breast pieces at the same time as the onion and garlic.)
After 15 minutes, the chicken skin should be golden and crisp. Turn the pieces over and pour 300ml water into the pan. This should come For best results, buy El Navarrico’s large Judion butter beans about halfway up and not touch the skin. Add the thyme and lemon zest, and simmer for 10 minutes.
Transfer the chicken to a plate and reduce the heat to low-medium. Put the spinach in the pan, decant the beans and the liquid from the jar on top, and leave for three to four minutes. There should be 3–4cm of liquid in the pan. This should be a brothy dish, so add extra water if necessary.
Once the spinach has wilted, return the chicken to the pan (with skin still clear of the liquid). Warm for five minutes more, then stir in the lemon juice. Serve in wide bowls or deep plates, with bread. Prep Chill Cook Serves 15 min 20 min 30 min 6
For the biscuits 100g unsalted butter, at room temperature 90g caster sugar 100g plain flour, sifted 20g cornflour
1 tsp baking powder 1 tsp ground ginger
For the figs
10 sage leaves 6 plump fresh figs 2 tbsp warm water 3 tbsp raw honey 150g creme fraiche, to serve
Heat the oven to 200C/390F/gas 6 and line a baking tray with baking parchment.
Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl using a wooden spoon. Add the remaining ingredients, mix and refrigerate for 20 minutes. Roll a walnut-sized teaspoon of dough in your hands into a ball, repeating to make six balls using half the dough. Space them evenly on the baking tray and bake for eight minutes, until they start to turn golden. Remove and cool on the tray, then slide them off with a palette knife. Repeat with the remaining dough, then store in an airtight container.
For the figs, reheat the oven to 200C/390F/ gas 6. Put four of the sage leaves in the base of an ovenproof dish that will fit the figs. Cut a cross into each fruit from the stalk to two-thirds of the way down. Squeeze each fig at its base to encourage the centre to open, and slot a sage leaf in each. Place the figs in the dish. Mix the honey with the water and pour it over the figs.
Bake for 15–20 minutes, basting with the juices after 10 minutes. The figs should be soft but intact.
Decant the figs into bowls. Pour a couple of spoons of juice over the top of each and serve with a dollop of creme fraiche and two biscuits per person.
Recipes taken from The Borough Market Cookbook by Ed Smith (Hodder & Stoughton)