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MasterChef Australia

Weds - Fri at 7.30pm TVNZ 1

Ep 5 - Cinnamon Chicken

Renae Smith

Cinnamon Chicken with Beetroot and Pistachio

Serves 4


4 chicken breast, skin off

2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

8 small beetroots, peeled and cut into 1cm dice

1 bunch thyme

70 grams pistachio nuts

100 ml plus 3 tablespoons grapeseed oil

1 egg, separated

½ cup cream

½ cup milk

1 teaspoon butter

2 teaspoons flour


  1. Preheat oven to 200C and heat sous vide machine to 65C.
  2. Place cinnamon in a bowl, add chicken breast and toss to coat. Transfer chicken to a sous vide bag. Place in the sous vide machine and cook until tender, about 20-25 minutes. Remove chicken from water and set aside.
  3. To make the pistachio cream, place pistachio nuts in a bender and process until a fine powder. Set aside 1 tablespoon powder. Transfer remaining powder to a saucepan, add 35 ml oil and 100 ml water and place over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and allow to simmer about 3 minutes. Sieve mixture through a fine sieve, without pressing, back into the food processor. Add egg yolk and process for about 1 minute. With processor running, slowly add 65 ml oil until mixture thickens. Season with salt and transfer to a bowl and set aside in the fridge.
  4. Add 2 tablespoons oil to a frypan and place over medium-high heat. Add ¾ of the beetroot cubes and 2 sprigs thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer to oven and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven, drizzle with another tablespoon oil and sprinkle with picked thyme leaves. Set aside. Reduce oven to 180C.
  5. Place remaining beetroot, cream, milk and 100ml water into a saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a boil, lower heat and allow to simmer until beetroot is tender, about 20 minutes. Strain beetroot, reserving liquid, transfer to a food processor. Add butter and process until smooth, adding cooking liquid as necessary. Season with salt and pass through a sieve into a clean bowl and set aside.
  6. Place egg white, reserved pistachio powder, flour and pinch salt in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on a tray lined with baking powder and place in the 180C oven to bake until golden around the edges, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.
  7. Remove the cooked chicken from the sous vide bag. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a frypan set over medium heat. Add the chicken and fry just until it is cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a board.
  8. To serve, slice the chicken and place on the plates. Add some beetroot cubes, pistachio cream, and beetroot puree to the plate. Crumble the pistachio crumb and sprinkle on top, Garnish with thyme flowers.