Mystery Box Madness challenge at I Heart Cooking Clubs with a completely open mind. And I still ended up doing a Diana Henry recipe.
For Mystery Box Madness we're allocated a list of ten ingredients, and we need to find a recipe from one of the featured chefs containing at least three of them. This week's ingredients were chicken, seaweed, sesame seeds, parsley, mozzarella, pasta, mango, brown sugar, zucchini and mint. I was absolutely sure I'd find a Nigella or Ottolenghi recipe using pasta, zucchini and mint. Or a Jamie Oliver recipe using mango, brown sugar and mint. But the first recipe that caught my eye was Diana Henry's take on Coronation Chicken.
Coronation chicken is the sort of post-War British cooking that gets a pretty bad reputation - invented by Constance Spry and Rosemary Hume for the coronation of Elizabeth II, it can be an extremely lurid combination of cold chicken, mayonnaise, curry powder and raisins. It's the dish that Americans should point to every time we say rude things about American food. But it can be absolutely wonderful. Made carefully, with a kick to the dressing and a good balance of fresh ingredients it's a really wonderful combination of savoury, sweet, creamy and crunchy. Diana's recipe uses fresh mint, mango and chicken breast - I used thigh fillets - and the mint gives everything a wonderful lift.