So it’s a Friday evening. You’ve got to sort out dinner,  there are other things that seem a higher priority (it’s a lie – you’re just feeling a little lazy, so flopping on the sofa seems of paramount importance). But on the flip side you’ve been at work all day and you just want something delicious to munch.

Here’s the solution – an easy one-pot chicken dish that can be left on its own for a little bit (i.e. time for flopping on the sofa).

I’ve been having a lot of these sorts of dinners lately whilst I get other things sorted out – I’ve launched a side project in the form of an Edinburgh blog, it’s called Edinburgh Editor – and this recipe is one of quite a few ‘too busy to really cook’ dinners that have been gracing my table (I wrote about another, the Chicken and Broccoli One-Pot the other day). It’s a really simple idea, and I love the idea of being able to leave it after the initial stages – it means that the flat smells really delicious and I can get back to my desk and get things done. Beyond that though this dish is really fresh tasting and is an excellent sharer. I just plonked the pan down in the middle of the table and served it from there – no pretensions, just good, honest cooking; surely one of life’s great pleasures?

 Chicken & Tomato Dinner

One Pot Tomato & Chickpea Chicken

This recipe is based on another the Donal Skehan wrote in Delicious. magazine a couple of months ago (I can’t find the actual recipe on their site). I’ve built it out a little to boost the flavours and make it even more tasty. It serves four, or could go further if you add in some more chickpeas and something else on the side. I like things a little spicier, so added 2 tsp of smoked paprika, but play it safe if you don’t and go with one (you can always add more, it’s trickier to take it out!)

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
6 chicken thighs
1 red onion
1 tin chopped tomatoes (400g)
1 tin chickpeas (400g)
6 slices of salami
1 small handful of basil (inc. stalks)
1-2 tsp smoked paprika
2 cloves garlic

Directions

Chop the onion into thin slices, root to tip. Crush the garlic using the side of a knife and cut it into small chunks, slice the salami into strips, and then into small chunks.

In a large frying pan heat up the olive oil until it is properly hot then add the chicken thighs, cooking them until they are browned (using tongs to turn them. Take them out of the frying pan and place on a plate. Put the onions and garlic into the hot pan and allow them to soften (but not turn brown; use a little more oil if the chicken has absorbed it all).

Once the onion begins to soften add the chicken back into the pan, along with the tomatoes, the salami and the paprika; stir it all in. Take three-quarters of the basil and tear it into the pan as well. Cover and leave to cook for 15 minutes.

Five minutes before the end of the cooking, drain the chickpeas and then add them into the pan. Just before serving, give it a final stir and then scatter the remaining basil on the top. Serve in the pan with hunks of crusty bread.