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In late November, Niall got me an early Christmas present treat of Jamie Oliver’s newest cook book Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals, the accompanying Channel 4 TV programme you no doubt enjoyed in the weeks leading to the holidays.

I’ve had the chance over the last month or so to try out quite a few of the recipes, and one time I even dared to attempt an entire menu in the 30 minute time-scale.  It was one of the most dramatic, stressful and hilarious episodes I have ever had in a kitchen.

I went for the Stuffed Cypriot Chicken menu, which includes side dishes of pan-fried asparagus and vine tomatoes, cabbage salad, jazzed up flatbreads, a St Clement’s drink and a vanilla Ice-cream float.

I set my alarm for 30 minutes and set to work like a hyperactive child, working like a bat out of hell to try get everything done in the 30 minute time frame.  The results were as follows:

  • An unbelievably messy kitchen
  • Nearly losing a finger trying to stuff chicken breasts at speed
  • A comically stressed cook (me) bellowing yelps and squeaks throughout the cooking process
  • A truly delicious meal prepared in 48 minutes (not including cleaning up time, mind)

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