Coronation chicken

Coronation chicken


16 people made this

About this recipe: Specially created for Queen Elizabeth's coronation lunch, this curry-flavoured salad with a fruity rice pilaf has become a traditional summer dish. Often made with cream and mayonnaise in the sauce, this updated version cuts the fat content by reducing the amount of mayonnaise and adding yogurt.

Norma MacMillan

Serves: 6 

  • 1 chicken, about 1.7 kg (3¾ lb), without giblets
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 large carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 1 celery stick, chopped
  • 6 black peppercorns, lightly crushed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 large banana
  • 2 courgettes, cut into thin ribbons with a vegetable peeler
  • sprigs of fresh mint to garnish
  • Curry dressing
  • 150 g (5½ oz) plain low-fat yogurt
  • 4 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp korma-flavoured curry paste
  • grated zest of 1 large lemon
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice, or to taste
  • 2 tbsp snipped fresh chives
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • salt and pepper
  • Raisin and mango pilaf
  • 375 g (13 oz) basmati rice, well rinsed
  • 45 g (1½ oz) raisins
  • 45 g (1½ oz) ready-to-eat dried mango, chopped
  • 75 g (2½ oz) pecan nuts

Prep:1hr30min  ›  Cook:55min  ›  Ready in:2hr25min 

  1. Place the chicken in a large saucepan and cover with water. Add the onion, carrot and celery, and bring almost to boiling point, skimming the surface as necessary. When bubbles begin to break through the surface, reduce the heat so the water is just simmering. Add the peppercorns and bay leaf, and simmer for 45 minutes or until the juices run clear from the chicken when you pierce the thigh.
  2. Remove the chicken from the liquid and set aside to cool. Pour the cooking liquid through a fine sieve into a measuring jug. Discard the vegetables.
  3. To make the pilaf, put the rice in a saucepan and add 600 ml (1 pint) of the strained cooking liquid. Stir in the raisins and mango. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 8–10 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender.
  4. Remove the rice from the heat and set aside, covered, for 5 minutes. Then transfer the rice to a bowl and leave to cool completely.
  5. Meanwhile, make the dressing. Put the yogurt, mayonnaise, curry paste, and lemon zest and juice in a large mixing bowl and mix until well blended. Stir in the chives, mint and parsley and seasoning to taste.
  6. When the chicken is completely cool, remove the skin and cut the meat into bite-sized pieces. Fold them into the curry dressing. (If you like, cover the chicken and chill; remove from the fridge 15 minutes before serving.) Slice the banana and gently stir it into the chicken mixture.
  7. Stir the pecans into the rice pilaf and spoon onto 6 plates. Arrange the courgette ribbons on the pilaf and top with the chicken mixture. Garnish with fresh mint sprigs and serve.

Some more ideas

Use halved seedless green grapes instead of sliced banana. * For a special occasion turkey coronation salad, buy 600 g (1 lb 5 oz) smoked turkey in one piece and cut into bite-sized pieces. To make the dressing, put 150 g (5½ oz) plain low-fat yogurt, 4 tbsp mayonnaise, 4 spring onions, the finely grated zest of 1 lemon and salt and pepper to taste in a blender or food processor and process until well blended. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the smoked turkey and sliced banana. Instead of the pilaf, cook 375 g (13 oz) mixed basmati and wild rice in boiling water for about 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool, then stir in 170 g (6 oz) finely shredded red cabbage and 85 g (3 oz) watercress, roughly chopped.

Plus points

Using the chicken stock to cook the rice ensures that none of the water-soluble vitamins that seeped into the water while the chicken was being poached are lost. * Bananas are one of the best fruit sources of potassium, which is essential for muscle and nerve function and to help regulate blood pressure. Bananas also provide fibre, vitamins B6 and C, magnesium and copper.

Each serving provides

B1, B6, E, niacin * B2, C, folate, copper, iron, potassium, selenium, zinc * A, calcium

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