Green Chicken Bowls with Pine Nut Mayo
Recently I rekindled an old love…
Pine Nut Mayonnaise.
The original idea came from one of my favourite Sydney chef’s Matt Moran of Sean’s Panaroma in Bondi Beach.
I can’t believe I forgot about it for years and years. But luckily I have a food blog to remind me!
It’s one of those simple ideas that really surprises with just how delicious the combination of 2 little ingredients can be.
It’s my go-to when the first asparagus of Spring makes its way into my kitchen. But there’s no need to limit it to one season.
It really breathes life into this simple bowl of poached chicken and green veg.
This method is a little longer than my usual recipes because I’m keeping washing up to a minimum by reusing the saucepan. If you’re short on time, but happy for more cleaning, cook the chicken at the same time as the veg using a pot for each.
My chicken breasts gave me more meat than I needed for this (I aim for 150g / 5oz per person). I just saved the extra for lunch the next day.
Oh and if you don’t have a thermometer, it takes the guess work out of knowing when your meat is done. Worth considering the investment.
enough for: 2
takes: 30 minutes
net carbs: 17g / serve
2 small chicken breast fillets
1 head broccoli (approx 300g / 10.5oz)
1 bunch kale (approx 250g / 9oz)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons mayonnaise (approx 100g / 3.5oz)
50g (2oz) pine nuts, toasted
1. Cut each chicken breast into 3 long strips. Place in a small saucepan large enough to fit the chicken in a single layer. Cover with cold water and add a good pinch of salt. Place on a high heat and leave the lid off.
2. When the chicken liquid is gently simmering, reduce the heat to medium / medium high and simmer for 8-10 minutes with the lid off so you can keep an eye on it.
3. When the chicken reaches 165F / 73C (test with a thermometer), remove the chicken and place in a clean bowl. Save the broth for cooking the veg. If you don’t have a thermometer, just cut into the largest piece of chicken to make sure it is no longer pink.
4. While the chicken is cooking, slice broccoli stems into 1/2cm (1/4 inch) thick slices. Chop the florettes into bite sized trees. When the chicken is cooked and resting happily in a bowl, bring the cooking liquid to a rapid boil. Pop the prepared broccoli into the pot. Bang the lid on and boil for 5 minutes. Drain the broccoli using a bowl to catch the cooking liquid.
5. Slice kale crosswise into 1cm (1/2im) ribbons. Then when the broccoli is cooked, use the same liquid and pot to boil the kale with the lid on for about 2 minutes or until kale is wilted. Drain and discard the cooking liquid (or save it to drink – super nutritious and delicious!).
6. When you have a spare minute, combine mayo and pine nuts in a small bowl.
7. To serve, divide cooked broccoli, kale and lemon juice between two bowls. Shred chicken using your hands of two forks and toss cooked chicken in with the veg. Finish with a big dollop of the pine nut mayo on each bowl.
WINE MATCH: A crisp dry Riesling or big buttery Chardonnay.
Variations & Substitutions
pantry-friendly – frozen broccoli + kale.
short on time – use 2 pots – a smaller one for the chicken and a larger one for the broccoli and kale. Boil broccoli for 3 minutes then add the kale to the same pot and cook both with the lid on for an additional 2 minutes. Drain and continue as per recipe.
keto / ultra low carb – replace pine nuts with macadamias and replace broccoli with extra kale or bay spinach.
vegetarian – replace chicken with your fave cooked veggie protein such as lentils, chickpeas, poached eggs or boiled eggs.
nut-free – either go with a plain mayonnaise or flavour with something like 1 tablespoon chopped preserved lemons, a handful of chopped pitted olives, 1-2 tablespoons capers, sun dried tomatoes or grilled red peppers.
more substantial (carb lovers) – steamed rice, cooked quinoa, crusty bread or cooked pasta.
more substantial (low carb) – more chicken, more pine nuts, more mayo, more veg!
Low FODMAP – skip the broccoli stems.
different vegetables – feel free to add any cooked veg to the bowls. Green beans, asparagus, snow peas all make excellent substitutes for the broccoli. And any leafy green such as spinach, chard, collards or silverbeet can be used for the kale. I like to serve with some sauerkraut for added crunch and freshness.
diffferent nuts – macadamias, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts are all excellent. But pine nuts are my favourite.
different protein – see vegetarian options. Also awesome with fish. Anything from poached fresh fish to smoked salmon or trout to canned sardines or mackerel.
vegan – use my egg-free mustard mayo and change the protein to cooked lentils, cooked chickpeas, roasted walnuts or chunks of avocado.
even more flavour – fry the pinenuts in olive oil and then use the oil to make your mayo. Next level!
Waste Avoidance Strategy
chicken breast fillets – freeze it.
broccoli – will keep wrapped in a plastic bag in the fridge for 1-2 weeks. Can be frozen (if you have time chop before freezing so it will defrost quickly in the pan).
kale – will keep in the fridge in a plastic bag uncooked for 1-2 weeks. Once cooked it will keep for a month or so in the fridge. Can be frozen both cooked or raw.
lemon – whole lemon will keep wrapped in a plastic bag in the fridge for months.
mayonnaise – unopened in pantry or once opened will keep for months in the fridge.
pine nuts – keep them in the pantry.
Yes! Just cook as per the recipe but keep the pine nuts, mayo and cooked chicken and veg separately. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 5-7 days. The chicken and veg can be frozen but the mayonnaise will split if you freeze it.