This would have to be one of my favourite recipes.  Some pre-prep is needed to make sure there is plenty of time to marinate in advance, but once it’s done marinating, throw it in the oven with minimal fuss!  By Megan Crockart
Serves 4
2 eshalots, peeled, chopped
1 long red chilli, chopped
1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed, bruised and chopped
2cm piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons xylitol
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 tablespoons fish sauce
165ml can coconut cream
6 thigh fillets, left whole, trimmed of excess fat
Cucumber quinoa salad
2 tablespoons rice bran oil
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
½ teaspoon xylitol
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 continental cucumber, halved lengthways, sliced
½ red or yellow capsicum, cut into chunks
1 long red chilli, thinly sliced (optional)
½ cup torn fresh mint leaves

  1. Place eschalots, chilli, lemongrass, ginger, garlic, xylitol, lime juice and fish sauce in a small food processor. Process until smooth. Stir in coconut cream until combined. Transfer to a glass or ceramic dish (something that also can go in the oven), add chicken. Turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate over night if possible.
  2. Preheat oven to 200°C/180°C fan forced. Place the whole dish in the oven and roast for 50 minutes.
  3. Make the cucumber quinoa salad – Place oil, vinegar and xylitol in a small bowl. Stir until xylitol has dissolved. Place quinoa, cucumber, capsicum, chilli and mint in a bowl. Drizzle with dressing. Toss until well combined. Serve the cucumber quinoa salad topped with 1-2 chicken thighs.