Herb marinated thigh with grilled Portobello mushroom, okra and chicken couscous

This is a completely home cooked meal that we made from scratch *together*! πŸ™‚

chicken couscous rice

Of course, we didn’t rear the chickens, plant the mushrooms or made the couscous but other than that, everything was done properly and it turned out to be a wonderful meal! I wanted her to have a good impression of couscous since I like it so we made that with chicken essence from cooking the chicken!

couscous chicken

You will need:

  • Chicken leg/quarter – drum and thigh (one per person)
  • Herbs (fresh is better)
  • Portobello mushrooms
  • Fresh milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • Okra
  • Couscous

I didn’t take the traditional photo coz some things were done on the fly. I also decided against using the OXO Chicken Cubes and went with the flavorful chicken goodness that the pressure pan cooker produced.


The chicken leg (cut that includes the drum and thigh) were selected very carefully – my dear choose two of the best on offer, with a larger one for me. Strangely enough, this cut is called Chicken Maryland in some places, but for me, that is a dish, not a quarter cut of chicken.

marinated chicken

It was then marinated with a variety of herbs and spices for a full 24 hours while wrapped in an air-tight bag inside the refrigerator.

frying chicken

The chicken was then taken out of the bag and then fried with a bit of oil inside a pressure pan. The bits of garlic and lemon used to marinate the chicken is also fried alongside but save a bit of the juices for the end.

grilled chicken

The pressure pan was then closed and the chicken allowed to cook for 30 minutes with a turnover at the middle. That’s her part, cooking the chicken. I did the much easier couscous and BBQ mushrooms. πŸ˜‰

chicken essence

I bought store-brand Tesco couscous. I wanted to go for the whole wheat version but at her suggestion went with this instead. You’re supposed to add 1.5 parts of water to 1 part of couscous.

cooking couscous

However, I decided to use 1 part water and the remaining 0.5 parts were composed of an equal mixture of fresh milk (which I find makes couscous taste better) and the sauces from the pressure cooked chicken.


I cooked the couscous and let it stand for 5 minutes before fluffing it out to individual grains using a fork. It turned out fine except for a little caramelization at the bottom, which was discarded.

Oh, and we also blanched some okra (lady fingers) in hot water and ate most of it before leaving two (2) each for the dinner plates. smirk

portabello mushroom

The Portobello mushrooms are the huge teacup sized ones that cost RM 4-5 each and should only be cooked for a minute or so to retain the awesome juiciness of these flavor absorbing beauties.

grilling mushrooms

The couscous was infused with the natural flavor of chicken derived from the juices during pressure cooking and tastes absolutely wonderful! It’s a bit like chicken rice, except it’s couscous.

xx hot peri peri

I didn’t think the dish needed any other flavoring but put in some Nando’s XX-hot Peri-Peri Sauce anyway. I reckon our version tastes better than Nando’s any day! :p

chicken couscous

It was an awesome collaboration in the kitchen that resulted in a delicious dinner!

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35 thoughts on “Herb marinated thigh with grilled Portobello mushroom, okra and chicken couscous”

  1. At first was quite reluctant to get the mushroom since I haven’t try it before. Now…I really like this juicy mushroom, dear…Yummy!!

    The couscous was indeed something new to me and when you added the chicken essence and milk to enhance the flavor, it turned into an awesome stuff!


    • Yeah, the mushroom is really good eh dear? πŸ™‚

      I like Portobello mushrooms like this, whole and not sliced up.

      Thanks dear, I’m glad you like the couscous too. I thought it was better than using the OXO Chicken Cubes – your chicken essence tastes much better! *hugs*

    • Yup, I agree, it’s not much more difficult than rice! πŸ™‚

      Trick is to just time is properly and let it stand and then fluff it up for couscous you can see by the grain.

      Thanks! I didn’t cook that, my better half did, the chicken tasted awesome! πŸ˜€

  2. HB, great meal. The mushrooms I would like to cooked it slice up so favor soak in it. Notice you never use wine in cooking.

    • Thanks Vickie! πŸ™‚

      I don’t think Portobello mushrooms of this size is meant for slicing – it’ll be a waste.

      These huge ones are meant to be grilled as it is for the max amount of juicy goodness. There are smaller ones for slicing.

      I hardly use wine coz I don’t drink much nowadays – last time I had a drink was when I opened an Irish single malt whiskey during Chinese New Year.

    • It tastes awesome too! πŸ™‚

      No worries, it’s just something I ate a lot of when I was studying in Australia.

      It’s cheaper than rice (rice isn’t cheap there) and it’s easy to cook. Haha!

    • Thanks Julian! πŸ™‚

      I appreciate the kind comments – yup, it tastes good too.

      Better than all my previous efforts at cooking anyway. My better half is an awesome cook! πŸ˜€

    • Me too! πŸ™‚

      Oh ya, now you made me want to cook quinoa! I quite like it too!

      Healthy stuff indeed.

      Yup, it’s something we both like to do so it’s a good bonding session too. πŸ˜€

  3. First time I heard of this… couscous… how to pronounce I also dont know.. hahaha… some more, cannot imagine how it taste like.. hmmm.. must be pretty good.. I must follow your marination of the chicken.. lemon and garlic.. plus other sauces.. Great combination, both of you!

    • It’s available at the pasta section of most grocery shops. πŸ™‚

      Couscous is basically a kind of rice made of semolina like pasta. It tastes different from rice but in a good way. The texture is different though.

      Check it out, it’s pretty good. I get Tesco store brand but all major pasta manufacturers e.g. mass market ones like San Remo also sells it.

      That’s my better half’s method of marinating chicken! I didn’t do that, I’m not that good. Haha!

      Thanks Reena! πŸ˜€

    • Yeah, I love Portobello mushrooms too! πŸ™‚

      It’s expensive when it’s big, the smaller ones are quite cheap but those are mostly for slicing or cooking in stews and such.

      I like using the big ones, that’s meant for grilling whole.

    • Thanks Melissa! πŸ™‚

      That’s all my better half’s work – I wouldn’t know I had to marinate chicken for 24 hours inside an air-tight bag in the fridge!

      I like couscous coz of the taste of semolina and texture but like they say, one man’s meat…

    • Yup!

      I love doing that, it’s something that we both enjoy so we can do it together.

      It’s fun to cook during weekends. πŸ˜€

    • Thanks Kelly! πŸ™‚

      Yup, it’s not too difficult this one. I made a really complicated cottage pie of sorts that took *AGES* to complete after this though.

      It was fun coz I used new ingredients like fennel and curly kale.

  4. Never had any idea on cooking portebello mushrooms. Would always slice it and ended up boiling it instead of grilling or pan-frying it.

    Anyhow, HB, it looks sumptuous! =D

    • Yup, that’s what my better half does too! πŸ™‚

      She slices the Portobello mushrooms to pan-fry.

      I like to get the large ones so I can just grill it whole. It’s meant to be cooked that way, the smaller ones are much cheaper and meant for slicing or cooking in stews.

      I’m partial to whole Shittake mushrooms that’s properly hydrated and steeped in tasty goodness that you can get at some takeaway Chinese rice places.

      Thanks Ciana! πŸ˜€

  5. I saw this post last week and drooled so much until I forgot to leave comments!! Phiak me!

    It is really delicious looking and I was wondering whether you could sometimes organize a special dinner for your friends. Every diner would just pay RM50 and eat whatever you cook!!! This is how the chain of Delicious started. My 2 lady friends started it that way out of their hobby and interest in cooking, not knowing that Ms.Read and Delicious would flourish till today.

    • Nice! I didn’t know that was how Delicious started! πŸ™‚

      Cheers for the info mate!

      Yeah, that is a rather nice idea but only if we have enough space for a dinner table that can seat more than 2 people.

      I think it would definitely cover the costs of this cooking recipe, but the cottage pie I just made costs way more than RM 100 just for the ingredients alone! Haha!

    • It’s the best! πŸ™‚

      Part of the fun is grocery shopping for the ingredients and then cooking together.

      I just saw a bottle of Nando’s XX-hot Peri-Peri Sauce on the shelves while grocery shopping. I’ve only seen Extra Hot to date so I grabbed the bottle.

      Not too bad but I still prefer hot salsa – tastes better with chicken! πŸ˜€


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