Corn-fed Chicken and Herbed Lentil salad

Corn-fed Chicken and Herbed Lentil Salad
(serves 4)

Level of difficulty- Moderate

Enjoy this casual but extremely flavoursome fork-food dish at lunch or dinner. Corn-fed chicken is always plump and juicy.


400g (2) corn-fed chicken single breasts (skin on)
15ml (1 tbsp) olive oil
1 tsp flaky sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
30ml (2 tbsp) lemon juice
30ml (2 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp finely chopped chives
flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Herbed Lentil Salad


• Preheat oven to 220°C.

• Place chicken into a bowl with first measure of oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss together.

• Place chicken on a low-sided baking tray skin-side up and place in oven. Cook for 15-20 minutes or till chicken juices run clear. Test by inserting a metal skewer into thickest part of chicken breast.

• Cover tray with aluminium foil for up to 20 minutes to allow chicken to rest.

• Don kitchen gloves as the chicken will be hot, and using hands, remove chicken skin, then shred chicken. If you wish snip chicken skin into pieces with scissors, place back onto baking tray place into oven. Roast for 10-15 minutes or till crispy.

• Place shredded chicken into a bowl; add lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and chives. Stir to combine and moisten with any residue juices from chicken baking tray. Season to taste.

• Place Herbed Lentil Salad onto a large platter, or divide amongst individual plates, and top with warm chicken. If you wish top chicken with crispy chicken skin.

Herbed Lentil Salad
(serves 4)

Use Puy lentils imported from France or you will find very good green lentils imported from Canada at organic shops. Aniseed is an anise-flavoured herb. If you have trouble finding this dried herb, substitute chopped fresh tarragon or chervil leaves.


15ml (1 tbsp) olive oil
90g (1/2 small) onion (finely diced)
1 small clove garlic (crushed)
80g (1 medium) carrot (diced)
1 sprig thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp dried aniseed (crushed)
140g green lentils
1/2 tsp flaky sea salt
500ml (2 cups) cold water
30ml (2 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
10ml (2 tsp) lemon juice
flaky sea salt to taste
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp finely chopped chives
2 tbsp finely chopped Italian parsley leaves


• Into a medium-sized, heavy-based pot pour oil and heat to medium hot.

• Reduce heat to medium, add onion and cook for 2 minutes or till onion is beginning to soften. Add garlic, carrot, thyme, bay leaf and aniseed. Cook for 5-6 minutes or till onion is soft.

• Add lentils, first measure of salt, and pour in water.

• Over a medium heat cook for 20-25 minutes till lentils are soft to the bite but not mushy, and most of the water has been absorbed. Drain off excess water.

• Remove from heat and remove thyme and bay leaf.

• Add extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar and lemon juice and season to taste.

• Add chives and parsley and stir to combine.

• Serve warm or at room temperature.

Leading New Zealand chef, caterer, teacher and food writer Ruth Pretty is known for fresh, delicious, imaginative New Zealand cuisine, whether it is served for an event in New Zealand or in an international setting.

Widely regarded as the capital city’s top caterer and cooking school host, Ruth Pretty and her team are seen at most of Wellington’s biggest and most prestigious events.

Ruth is the author of five popular cookbooks. For details see

Ruth opened the Ruth Pretty Cooking School at Springfield in 1993. Since then, more than 20,000 participants have enjoyed the weekend classes, with Ruth or a guest chef tutoring.

Complementary Wines: Champagne rosé, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Grigio

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