For the chicken & stuffing

For the lemon thyme risotto


  • STEP 1

    Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. First, make the stuffing. Finely chop the soaked porcini and set aside. Heat the oil in a shallow pan, then gently cook the onion for 5 mins, stirring occasionally. Add the porcini, button mushrooms and thyme leaves, season, turn the heat up, then cook for another 5 mins until the mushrooms have softened.

  • STEP 2

    Add the wine to the pan, then reduce fiercely until nearly dry. Add 50ml of the porcini soaking liquid, then continue to reduce for a couple of mins until you have a syrupy sauce. Allow to cool for a couple of mins, then carefully spoon between the skin and the flesh of the chicken breasts. Can be made a day ahead and chilled, or frozen for 1 month. Defrost in fridge before cooking. Season, place on a baking tray, skin-side up, then cook in the oven for 20 mins, until the chicken is cooked through and golden.

  • STEP 3

    While the chicken is cooking, make the risotto. Heat the butter and olive oil in a saucepan. Add the celery and onion, then cook over a medium heat for 5 mins until softened. Add the rice, coat it well in the oil, then cook for 1 min. Gradually add the stock a ladleful at a time, stirring with each addition until absorbed. Continue adding the stock and stirring until the risotto is oozing and thick – about 20 mins. Stir in the thyme, lemon juice, zest and Parmesan.

  • STEP 4

    When the chicken is cooked through and golden, remove from the oven. Spoon the risotto onto serving plates, sprinkle with the extra Parmesan and top with a chicken breast. Spoon over the juices from the chicken pan, then serve immediately.


The porcini stuffing has a robust flavour that would also be wonderful in a whole roast chicken. For a meat-free alternative, simply stir the stuffing mix through the rice instead of the lemon thyme and swap the chicken stock for vegetable to make a rich mushroom risotto.


If you can’t get hold of porcini mushrooms, cook 1 finely chopped bacon rasher and add it to the stuffing to give it a real depth of flavour.


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