It’s always fun and a challenge to come up with new recipes. Thinking laterally about different ingredient mixes, ways of cooking and letting your imagination go. This was the most fun I’ve had cooking in a long time (and I always have fun!).
I was trying to think of a new way to cook with biltong while at the same time being challenged to come up with a new dish using Parmesan that was influenced by my country of origin. The two projects became one recipe! A perfect fit.
I think I’ve come up with something quite unique! So unique in fact that I had to make up a name for it as nothing else really fitted. So welcome to the food world to my Parchibis, a name created by using the beginning of the three main ingredients: Parmesan, chicken and biltong.
There’s an Italian/South African/Japanese fusion going on here. I’ve been cooking with biltong over the past year and love its versatility. So I thought that mixing it into these little cakes would add more flavour and texture to the smoothness of the chicken. The Parmesan adds the lovely cheesy depth. I’ve used Panko breadcrumbs as I love their texture and lightness – they are Japanese breadcrumbs which have a slightly flakier texture – but normal ones would also work.
This recipe is easily adaptable: add vegetables, like peppers or onions; substitute the biltong with bacon or chorizo and experiment with different herbs and spices. The possibilities are huge! Though I think you’ll be hard pushed to beat the tastiness of this combination. I gave my new concoction to several people to try out…just to make sure I wasn’t just overwhelmed by the wonderfulness of creating something unique and their verdicts were unanimous – they loved them – “We thought we’d died and gone to food heaven.” Now that makes me very happy.
Have you created something unique in the kitchen? Have you thought up unusual combinations? Do get in touch.
Parchibis: Parmesan, chicken and biltong bakes
Makes 6 parchibis
Half a cup of Parmesan
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
500g chicken breasts
2 cloves garlic, crushed
200g biltong, chopped into small pieces
2 tbsps dried oregano
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Combine the panko breadcrumbs, half the Parmesan and the olive oil. Mix it well with your fingers.
Put the chicken into a food processor and blend until it’s soft. Place in a bowl and add the egg, garlic, biltong, oregano and the rest of the Parmesan. Mix well.
Lightly butter a muffin tray. Divide the mixture between the six. Top the mixture with the breadcrumbs, lightly pressing them down so they stick.
Bake for 25 to 30 mins until the panko is golden brown.
Take out of the oven and rest for 10 mins. Take a knife to loosen each cake, they should come away really easily.
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I’m regularly going to post a new recipe using biltong, so watch this space.
And if you want to order some yourself, I highly recommend the Chichester Biltong Company where you can choose the wetness and fattiness of your biltong too (it’s very personal, you know).
Go to http://www.biltongcompany.co.uk and enter the code EATINGCOVENT when you order.
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