The Rope & Twine's chicken and bacon stack

Photo: Peter McIntosh
Photo: Peter McIntosh
Ask a Chef reveals the secrets of those superb dishes you ate in cafes and restaurants and wanted to try yourself.

Makes 4 portions

4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
8 rashers of middle bacon
New York black pepper
dried rosemary
dried thyme

To garnish
1 kumara
chopped fresh parsley

White wine reduction sauce
1 Tbsp butter to saute
1 onion, diced
1 small carrot, grated
4 stalks celery, chopped
200g butter
400ml medium white wine
5pc bay leaf
200g flour, sifted
800ml cream

Mashed potato
8-9 mashing potatoes=
3 Tbsp butter
½ cup milk
½ cup cream
salt and pepper to taste

Vegetable medley
3 carrots
3 courgettes
3 parsnip
2 kumara
¼ pumpkin

Slice each chicken breast lengthways into three sections.

Grill chicken and season with salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme.

Put chicken aside and leave to cool.

Grill the bacon until cooked and assemble the stacks, alternatively layering chicken then rasher of bacon until you have a tower of two rashers of bacon with three strips of chicken. A greased stainless steel food ring (or greased tall mug) is useful.

Dice the vegetable medley into cubes and season with salt and pepper followed by a drizzle of olive oil.

Place into oven and let roast while turning every five minutes until golden brown.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender, but still firm (about 15 minutes), then drain.

In a small saucepan, heat butter, milk and cream over low heat until butter is melted. Using a potato masher or electric beater, slowly blend milk mixture into potatoes until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Saute onion, bay leaf, celery and carrots until the onion is translucent.

Pour in white wine and reduce over a low heat.

Add the butter, then sprinkle with sifted flour until sauce thickens.

Lastly add cream and reduce until creamy consistency.

Slice kumara through a mandolin or chop thinly into julienne strips and deep fry until golden and crispy. Set aside.

To serve
Assemble your serving dish, beginning with the roasted vegetable medley at the base followed by a generous helping of mashed potato.

Place the stack in the middle of the dish, secure in the mashed potato.

Remove the food ring so the stack stays in place and secure with a bamboo skewer through the centre.

Pour the white wine reduction sauce over the stack and garnish with the kumara shavings finished with a sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley.

Recipe provided by The Rope & Twine, South Dunedin. Recipe requested by Karen Mitchell.

If you have enjoyed a dish in an Otago cafe or restaurant and would like the recipe, write to Ask a Chef, Features, Otago Daily Times, PO Box 517, Dunedin, or email, including your name, address and a daytime telephone number, and we will request it.

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