Cooking for people is one of the best ways to show that you appreciate them especially when you give them something out of the ordinary that is completely delicious. This recipe was created by one of my mum’s friends (@jobellerina on both instagram and twitter) and has been a regular meal in our house ever since we were introduced to it. It’s like a posh sweet and sour chicken with the sweetness of the chutney contrasting with the sharpness of the orange juice to give a wonderful explosion of flavour.
Mango has a great taste that works well in both savoury and sweet dishes. Whether in curry or on top of a cake, mango brings a great texture and sweetness to a dish that isn’t too overpowering and blends well with other ingredients. Green mango (or unripened mango) is more common in savoury dishes as it has a sharper flavour as the sugars have not yet developed. It can also be eaten on its own with a little soy sauce or vinegar to add some extra flavour. Using unripened mangos in chutney and pickles can work very well as they are firmer than the ripe ones so their texture doesn’t get degraded as much during preparation.
In contrast to this, fully ripe mangos are incredibly sweet, supremely juicy and an all-round pleasure to eat (so long as you don’t mind wiping the juices off your face). It works beautifully in many desserts as it keeps them moist and has a strong enough flavour to not get lost when mixed with other foods. Mango lassi, a yoghurt based drink, is particularly good when eating spicy foods as the sweetness of the mango and dairy from the yoghurt eliminate heat. It’s also super easy to make as all you have to do is blend fresh mango with yoghurt until it is smooth.
For this recipe, there are obviously lots of different brands of chutney which you can use and they differ significantly in their flavour. For a sweeter chutney, I would add a little more coriander and soy sauce to counteract the sugars but for a good quality, balanced chutney, this recipe will be perfect. You can substitute the chicken thighs with breasts or tofu if you prefer but I would precook the tofu to get it crispy and then place it into the sauce for ten minutes to absorb the flavour. The sauce freezes well so you can make a big batch in advance and just defrost what you need at the time.
Jo Bellerina’s Sticky Mango Chicken
Prep time: 5 minutes
Marinate time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 30-40 minutes
Cost per portion: around £1.50
1 jar mango chutney (around 300g)
300ml orange juice
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
3 minced garlic cloves
4 chicken thigh joints
Chopped coriander to garnish
Preheat the oven to gas mark 6 (200°C).
Place the chutney, orange juice, soy sauce, coriander and garlic into a jug and whisk to combine.
Put the chicken thighs into a baking dish and pour over the sauce. If there is time, leave to marinate for at least half an hour.
Bake for around 40 minutes until the skin is blistered and the chicken is fully cooked (when cut, any juices that flow out are clear – not pink.
Sprinkle with a little more coriander and serve with rice and fine green beans.
I hope you enjoyed the recipe. The combination of flavours is very moreish so cooking this can be a bit of an exercise in self-control if you are trying to make food for multiple meals. If you enjoy fusion food flavours, be sure to check out my recipe for curry laksa – it’s hot, spicy and perfect to eat as winter sets in. Of course, if you are looking for something a little on the sweeter side, why not get into the Thanksgiving spirit and make yourself a divine pumpkin pie?
Have a good one and I will be back next week with a delicious, sweet treat which is perfect in afternoon tea.