Ben Cooper's July Spicy BBQ Grilled Chicken with Crunchy Fennel Salad

Ben Cooper's July Spicy BBQ Grilled Chicken with Crunchy Fennel Salad

What is in season in July?

Aubergine, Beetroot, Blackberries, Blackcurrants, Blueberries, Broad Beans, Broccoli, Carrots, Cauliflower, Cherries, Chicory, Chillies, Courgettes, Cucumber, Gooseberries, Greengages, Fennel, French Beans, Garlic, Kohlrabi, Loganberries, New Potatoes, Onions, Peas, Potatoes, Radishes, Raspberries, Redcurrants, Rhubarb, Rocket, Runner Beans, Samphire, Sorrel, Spring Greens, Spring Onions, Strawberries, Summer Squash, Swish Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips, Watercress.

 Spicy BBQ Grilled Chicken with Crunchy Fennel Salad

 Serves 4 


  •  700g trimmed, skinless and boneless chicken thighs
  • ¼ tsp rock salt (2 large pinches)
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 red chilli (such as Fresno or Holland), seeds removed, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp finely chopped oregano
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 lemons, halved
  • 2 fennel bulbs, tough outer layers removed, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced crosswise
  • 80g sugar snap peas with the tips cut off and discarded then cut into thirds
  • 3 red spring onions (such as North Holland Blood Red), very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 4 tbsp cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp toasted white sesame seeds


Top Tip - Do instructions 2 & 3 the day before to allow the chicken to marinade further for better flavour and it will help you work a lot cleaner.

1. Firstly, warm the cider vinegar in a small pan with the sugar until the sugar has dissolved. Set aside to cool down.

2. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel then set aside on a plate.

3. Crush up the garlic, chilli, salt, tomato paste, oregano and olive oil with a mini blender until roughly chopped. Add to the chicken and mix gently to coat all the sides. Cover and leave to marinade while making the salad. 

4. Wash your hands and clean down between handling raw meat and vegetables.

5.In a large bowl, toss the fennel, sugar snap peas, spring onion, and vinegar mix and season with a big pinch of salt and mix once more. Cover and put to one side. 

6. Heat a bbq or grill pan over a medium to high heat. Grill chicken, turning once, until lightly charred. Repeat on both sides for about 4-5 minutes on both sides until the chicken is cooked through.   

7. While the chicken is cooking, grill lemons cut side down, until lightly charred and starting to caramelize for about 4 minutes.                             

8. Transfer the chicken to a platter or plate with lemons and allow to rest for 5 minutes                                                                                           

9. Mound the fennel salad next to the chicken. Squeeze the grilled lemons over the chicken and fennel salad. To finish, lightly sprinkle the sesame seeds over the chicken. 



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