Jerusalem artichokes are well loved in the city but have actually got nothing to do with it; not officially anyway. The name is a distortion of the Italian name of this sunflower tuber, which has an artichoke like flavour. From girasole articiocco to Jerusalem artichoke. The combination of saffron and whole lemon slices does not only make for a beautiful-looking dish, it goes exceptionally well with the nutty earthiness of the artichokes. This Jewish recipe is easy to prepare. You just need to plan ahead and leave it to marinate properly.
- 450 g Jerusalem artichokes, peeled, cut into six lengthways (1.5 cm-thick wedges)
- 45 ml lemon juice
- 8 chicken thighs, on the bone with skin on, or a medium whole chicken, divided into four
- 12 banana shallots, peeled, halved lengthways
- 12 large garlic cloves, sliced
- 1 medium lemon, cut in half lengthways and then into very thin slices
- 1 tsp saffron threads
- 50 ml olive oil
- 150 ml cold water
- 1 tbsp pink peppercorns, slightly crushed
- 10 g fresh thyme leaves
- 40 g tarragon leaves, chopped
- 2 tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Marinating time 2 hours or overnight
Put the Jerusalem artichokes in a medium saucepan, cover with plenty of water and add half the lemon juice. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10–20 minutes, until tender but not soft. Drain and leave to cool.
Place the Jerusalem artichokes and all the remaining ingredients, excluding the remaining lemon juice and half of the tarragon, in a large mixing bowl and use your hands to mix everything together well. Cover and leave to marinate in the fridge overnight, or for at least 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 240°C.
Arrange the chicken pieces, skin-side up, in the centre of a roasting tin and spread the remaining ingredients around the chicken. Roast for 30 minutes. Cover the tin with foil and cook for a further 15 minutes. At this point, the chicken should be completely cooked.
Remove from the oven and add the reserved tarragon and lemon juice. Stir well, taste and add more salt if needed. Serve at once.
Recipe from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi, with photographs by Jonathan Lovekin. Published by Ebury Press.