Rachel Allen was brought up in Dublin and left home at eighteen to study at the world-famous Ballymaloe Cookery School. Rachel is now a busy ...
for the chicken, fennel and orange salad:
2 tblsp olive oil
1 x 1.5–2.25kg (3lb 5oz–5lb) chicken or leftover roast chicken
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 fennel bulbs
2 tblsp finely chopped parsley
juice and finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
2 tblsp olive oil
4 large handfuls of salad leaves
for the pinwheels:
makes 20 pinwheels
215 ml (7fl oz) warm water
1 tsp caster sugar
11/2 tsp dried yeast or 15g (1/2oz) fresh yeast or 1 x 7g sachet of fast-action yeast
375 g (13oz) strong white flour, plus extra for dusting
1/2 tsp salt
2 tblsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
75g (3oz) mozzarella, grated
75g (3oz) parmesan cheese, grated
75g (3oz) tapenade or pesto
Method for the Chicken, Fennel and Orange Salad: Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), Gas mark 4.
Put the chicken in a roasting tin, drizzle over the olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast for 11/2–13/4 hours or until cooked through.
While the chicken is cooking, you can start preparing the salad. First peel and segment each orange. Using a small, sharp knife and working over a bowl to catch the juices, cut off the ends, then carefully cut away the peel and pith in a spiral until you have a peeled orange with only flesh and no pith. Next carefully cut along the edge of each segment, leaving behind the membrane and freeing a wedge of flesh from the pith. Repeat for all the segments and place the flesh in the bowl; squeeze the peel and remaining membrane into the bowl to catch any extra juice, then discard. Instead of segmenting the oranges, you can if you wish cut each peeled orange into slices horizontally to make round slices.
To prepare the fennel, slice off the fronds (the feathery bits on top) and reserve these for using later. Cut off the stalks and discard, then cut the bulb into slices 5mm (1/4in) thick.
When the chicken is cooked, allow to rest somewhere warm (such in as the oven, with the heat switched off) for 5 minutes, then carve into pieces and tear or cut these into roughly bite-sized chunks. Place in a large bowl with the fennel slices, orange segments and any juices, chopped parsley, lemon juice and zest and the olive oil. Toss together gently and season with salt and pepper.
Drain off a little of the liquid from the dish and use to dress the salad leaves in a separate bowl, then place the leaves in the middle of a large serving plate. Tip the chicken mixture around the salad, then scatter over the reserved fennel fronds to serve.
Method for the Pinwheels: In a measuring jug, mix the warm water with the sugar and yeast and leave to stand in a warm place for 5 minutes or until the mixture is creamy. If using fast-action yeast, there is no need to let the mixture stand.
Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl, or the bowl of an electric food mixer fitted with a dough hook, and make a well in the centre. Add the olive oil to?the yeast mixture, then pour into the well and mix to a loose dough, adding extra water if needed.
Knead for about 10 minutes or until dough is smooth?and springy to the touch. (If kneading in the electric food mixer, 5 minutes is usually long enough.) Grease the bowl with olive oil and put the dough back into it, then cover the top tightly with cling film and place somewhere warm to rise until doubled?in size. This may take up to 2 or even (on a cold day) 3 hours.
Meanwhile, grease a large baking sheet with olive oil and mix together the two grated cheeses in a bowl.
When the dough has doubled in size, transfer to a work surface dusted in flour. Sprinkle some flour over the dough and roll it out into a rectangle measuring roughly 20 x 25cm (8 x 10in). Spread the tapenade or pesto over the dough to cover it, then roll up like a Swiss roll, starting at one of the longer edges.
Cut the rolled-up dough into 20 even-sized slices, then place, cut side up, on the prepared baking sheet, well spaced apart, and sprinkle each one with the cheese. Set aside and leave to prove for 20–30 minutes or until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F), Gas mark 6.
When the pinwheels have doubled in size, place in the oven and bake for 10–15 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown.