Sumac chicken with Persian tomato salad


Today called for something simple as I had delegated cooking dinner to Maus.  I had three good reasons for this.  I was making tomato sauce and bread rolls AND I have a tooth ache. Well, I think it is a tooth ache.  The pain is radiating down the left side of my jaw so it is hard to blame one tooth in particular. The dentist reckons he has found some infection under a crown and prescribed huge amounts of antibiotics.  I don’t like taking antibiotics but am too frightened not to in case I end up with a full blown abscess under the crown.  Anyway, I was feeling sorry for myself and figured I had enough on my plate so dinner was Maus’ responsibility.

I asked Maus what she wanted and she said “chicken”.  I added cucumber to the wish list, because we have a few, and searched  Eat Your Books.  I came up with this recipe.  The only ingredients we didn’t have in the house or garden were the fresh chilli (I have so many in the freezer.  I didn’t grow any last summer) and the hummus.  It was too late to make hummus so we just bought some.

Since I am such a sweetie, I ended up making the salad for Maus.  Feel free to adjust the salad ingredients to the quantities that suit you – I did.

The recipe is by Valli Little and is from Delicious magazine, February 2009.

These quantities serve four.  We halved the recipe.


  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 tsp sumac
  • 2 tsp chopped thyme
  • grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 2 tbs* pomegranate molasses
  • 4 chicken breast fillets
  • hummus and Lebanese bread (if desired), to serve

*These are 20 mil tablespoons.


  • 4 tomatoes
  • 2 small Lebanese cucumbers, peeled
  • ½ salad onion
  • 1 long red chilli
  • 1 cup each of mint and flat-leaf parsley
  • Seeds of a pomegranate – this wasn’t in the recipe but they were a great addition and they are in season.
  • ⅓ cup shelled pistachios


  1. Combine the garlic, sumac, thyme, lemon zest, 2 tablespoons juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses and salt and pepper in a shallow dish.
  2. Add the chicken and turn to coat. Set aside to marinate while you prepare the salad.
  3. Combine remaining lemon juice, olive oil and pomegranate molasses in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper, then whisk together.
  4. Cut the tomatoes, cucumber and onion into 2cm cubes. The recipe said to deseed the cucumber and tomato but as there was just Maus and me, I didn’t bother.
  5. Deseed and devein the chilli and slice lengthways.
  6. Chop the herbs.
  7. Place the salad ingredients in a bowl with the nuts and pomegranate seeds, if using. Add the dressing and toss to combine.
  8. Preheat a barbecue or chargrill pan to medium-high.  When hot, add the chicken and grill until cooked through.
  9. Serve the chicken with salad, hummus and flat bread if, desired.  We skipped the bread as it is a bit filling but don’t skip the hummus.  It really made the recipe.

In my kitchen May 2017

In my kitchen:

Was a kiwano.  It is also called an African horned cucumber or melon.

Am I the only one who remembers eating these as a kid?  We used to call them prickly cucumbers and I loved them.  I have no idea where they came from but I presume Mum, or someone she knew, grew them.   I believe they are easy to grow in a climate with hot dry summers.  Perth would be ideal! Continue reading

Déjà vu

It most certainly is déjà vu.

Francesca, from Almost Italian, commented on my previous post by saying that she made a similar chocolate slice but hers included Vita Brits (Weet-Bix).  Francesca’s comment got me thinking.  Was the slice I remembered from my childhood the recipe from my sister, Vickie, or was it the one to which Francesca was referring?  We never ate Vita Brits or Weet-Bix for breakfast in our house but I do remember finding them in the pantry and eating them with butter and jam.  Were they left over after Mum had made this slice?

Continue reading

Home at last …

It certainly feels like I have been away.  I have definitely been away from both this blog and Bridgetown.  I hadn’t been here for ages.

As you know, I had been in Perth cleaning and gardening and packing.  The house now looks so good it was very hard to sign the management authority – there were even a few tears.  But I did it and now we are looking for tenants.  Normally, that would be the easy part but Perth is a boom-bust town and, at the moment, it is going through a ‘bust’ so it is harder than usual to find tenants. Continue reading