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Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Sumac is one of my favourite spices. Its dark fuchsia colour and tangy lemony flavour makes it seem so mysterious to me. Sumac (pronounced SOO-mak) is the fruit of a flower that blooms in the Middle East & Mediterranean. The berries of the sumac flower differ in colour from bright red to dark purple, depending on where the flower grows. Sumac has nearly no aroma but tastes tangy and has a subtle hint of citrus. I have only tried using sumac with chicken and tomato & red wine vinegar salads, but I have heard it goes wonderfully with lamb. If you haven’t experienced this spice yet, you are missing out.


  • 1/2 cup brown rice 
  • 2 small heads or 400g broccoli, cut into even florets & stalk thinly sliced 
  • 250g chicken breast, cut into even 3cm pieces 
  • 2 tablespoons sumac 
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley or shallots, roughly chopped, plus extra to serve 
  • the juice of 1 lemon 
  • 1x 400g tin of brown lentils, rinsed & drained


1. Cook brown rice by bringing the rice and 1 1/2 cups water to the boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat and simmer, cooking for around 20-25 minutes or until all water has been absorbed. When the water has almost been absorbed, uncover the saucepan and place a colander or sieve on top with the broccoli in it. Cover with the saucepan lid and steam for 5 minutes, whilst the rice finishes cooking. 

2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius fan-force. Line a baking tray with baking paper. 

3. Combine chicken pieces, sumac, parsley and 1/2 the juice of the lemon in a small bowl and stir well to combine. Place seasoned chicken in a single layer on prepared baking tray and cook in the oven for 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. 

Serve cooked chicken on a bed of brown rice and brown lentils. Add extra herbs and squeeze the remainder of the lemon juice on top, if desired. 

Serves /
Total Preparation time / 10 minutes 
Total Cooking time / 35-40 minutes (including cooking rice)

x E

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