Bored with your dull chicken recipe? This is cheap, cheerful and very tasty – and all you need is your spice drawer!

Ready in 40 minutes. Serves 3.


  • 3 large free range chicken thighs (or 6 drumsticks)
  • 1/2 teaspoon each pink Himalayan salt crystals and whole peppercorns (try to use a mix of peppercorns if you can – I like a blend of black, pink and Sechuan pepper)
  • 1/2 teaspoon each paprika, cayenne pepper, turmeric, chilli flakes, dried tarragon and dried thyme
  • 2 large slugs good olive oil (I use Olivado)


Preheat oven to 180°. Pat chicken dry as much as you can with a paper towel.

Grind Himalayan salt crystals and whole peppercorns in a pestle and mortar or blender until coarsely ground. Add the spices and oil, and mix well.

Liberally coat each piece of chicken with your spiced oil (it’s best if you use your hands and really get in there; just make sure you wash your hands thoroughly afterwards). Sear the outside of the chicken in a heavy ovenproof frying pan (I love my Lodge cast iron pans!) until the skin is crispy and caramelised, then bake in the oven for 40 minutes, basting once more with your spiced oil after about 20 minutes.

Serve chicken with fresh bread or chips, and a crisp green salad.