- 4 large organic, free-range chicken legs
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 large fresh thyme sprigs, leaves picked
- 2 fat garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 300ml homemade or good-quality chicken stock
- 50g butter
- 200g small shallots (about 8), or halved baby or pickling onions, peeled
- 4 little gem lettuce hearts
- 300g peas, freshly shelled or frozen
- ½ tsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp finely chopped fresh tarragon
- Cut off and discard the knuckle end of each drumstick, then season the chicken legs all over with salt and pepper. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan or large deep frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the chicken legs, skin-side down, and fry for about 6 minutes on each side until nicely golden. Add the thyme leaves, garlic and stock, bring to the boil, then partially cover and simmer for 45-50 minutes until the chicken legs are really tender.
- About 10 minutes before the chicken legs are ready, melt 25g of the butter in a medium-size pan. Add the shallots or onions, cover and cook gently over a medium heat, shaking the pan every now and then, for 8-10 minutes until tender and lightly browned.
- Meanwhile, trim the bases from each lettuce heart and cut them lengthways into quarters.
- Uncover the chicken and lift the legs onto a plate. Cover and keep hot. Skim the excess fat from the surface of the remaining liquid, then stir in the peas, sugar, tarragon and remaining butter. Season lightly and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the lettuce wedges and baby onions, return the chicken legs to the pan, re-cover and simmer for another 3 minutes, until the peas and lettuce wedges are tender and the chicken has heated through. Serve immediately.