The little boy is developing a preference in taste at a rapid speed – one which I’m constantly challenging myself to catch up with. He could be very random though, sometimes preferring a cheese stick over a bun for breakfast and at other times preferring to have none at all. Recently, we started to buy buns and bread loaves for him to eat for breakfast and he loves it a lot. He would demand to have one first thing in the morning by pointing to the fridge and mumbling ‘mian bao’ (面包 – Chinese for ‘bread’). Just this morning, after finishing his cranberry bun and feeling happily satisfied about it, he looked over and saw my slice of raisin bread and demanded to have that as well. So his poor mum had to settle for less than half a slice of it, though secretly, she felt as if she was on cloud nine as all mums do.
I was recently experimenting with a cake that I was going to bake for my mum’s birthday. It was a peach and berry butter cake – a simple recipe but with a classic twist and look that’s decent enough to look like a birthday cake. The boy loved it so much he kept asking for it. And he ate so much of it that I got quite worried if he was going to put on too much weight after that!
In general, I’m happy to see that he’s taking well to the taste of cheese and accepting a wider variety of textures and flavours such as mushrooms (chewy), meat (fibrous) and even leafy vegetables (extremely fibrous). Which makes it so much easier to cook meals at home since I don’t have to feel restrained about the variety of dishes to try out. This recipe was one of those that I experimented on him, incorporating cheese and vegetables directly into the rice so that it becomes a one pot dish with all the necessary nutrients for the family. And guess what? The boy loved it as much as his parents did.
- Olive oil: 2 tbsp +2 tbsp
- Lemon juice: 2 tbsp (half a lemon)
- Salt: 1 tsp + to taste
- Ground blackpepper: 1 tsp + to taste
- Chicken drumstick (with skin): 6
- White onion: 1, finely chopped
- Garlic: 2 cloves, finely chopped
- Rice: 1.5 cups
- White wine: 1/2 cup
- Chicken stock: 3 cups
- Broccoli: 1 head, cut into small florets
- Thyme: leaves from a few stalks
- Cheddar or mozzarella cheese: 1 cup
- Spring onion: 1 stalk, finely chopped
- Preheat oven at 200 degrees Celsius.
- Rub 2 tbsp oil, lemon juice, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp blackpepper over chicken drumsticks.
- Place on a baking tray together with the remaining marinade, skin side up.
- Bake 45min till golden brown and skin is crispy. Set aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp oil in dutch oven.
- Fry onions and garlic till soft and fragrant.
- Stir in rice, white wine, chicken stock, broccoli and thyme. Bring to a boil.
- Lower heat to simmer. Cover with lid and leave to cook for 10-15 min till rice is cooked.
- Turn off heat. Stir in cheese, salt and blackpepper to taste.
- Place chicken on top of rice.
- Garnish with spring onions to serve.
- Use the chicken oil drippings (mixture of olive oil and chicken fat) to cook the onion and garlic to make the dish even more fragrant.
- This recipe was kindly adapted from Simply Delicious’ “Crispy Chicken Thighs On Cheesy Broccoli Rice“.
- I changed the chicken thighs to drumsticks as most of the thighs sold at the local supermarket are skinless. Have also used cheddar instead of mozzarella cheese in the rice, hence the slightly more yellowish tinge to it.