A few weeks ago I received a very special delivery - Rosie Birkett's new cookbook, A Lot on her Plate. Rosie is a food writer and stylist and has written for The Guardian, Olive Magazine, Grazia, The Sunday Times and loads more top publications, as well as her own blog, but this is her first solo book. And what a book it is. A Lot on her Plate is full of incredible recipes and beautiful images shot by Helen Cathcart. The book has chapters on breakfasts and brunches, starters, small plates, bigger plates and super suppers, feasts for friends, salads, desserts and drink, and essentials. The majority of the recipes are of course Rosie's but she's also included family recipes and a couple from some of my favourite restaurants, including Dishoom.

I've been reading through the book and wanted to pick out some star recipes to mention here but I had such a hard time narrowing it down - I honestly could've listed every single recipe. Favourites include a breakfast recipe of cod's roe and sweetcorn fritters with avocado and Sriracha (wow!); bavette carpaccio with crispy capers and mustard mayo; chipotle roast chicken; salted butterscotch popcorn cheesecake (it's a girl after my own hear who puts salted butterscotch in a cheesecake); and cumin brioche buns which I'll be making this weekend. Rosie is passionate about seasonal ingredients and buying good quality produce, and this shines through the book. One of my sweetest parts of the book is in the intro, where she recommends kitchen equipment, ranging from the necessary to the nice-to-have, all with wonderful illustrations.

I've already cooked 1 recipe from A Lot on her Plate, and want to share it with you here - a beautiful chicken, tarragon and mushroom cassoulet that the housemates and I devoured on a week night recently. Make this for you housemates and they'll love you forever!

Serves 4

1 large handful cherry tomatoes
Olive oil
25g butter
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 small shallots, finely chopped
Handful fresh tarragon
100g chanterelles
2 large Portobello mushrooms, sliced
50g chestnut or button mushrooms
Bunch parsley, finely chopped
1 tsp white wine or tarragon vinegar (I used white wine vinegar)
8 free range chicken thighs, skin on (I used a mixture of thighs and drumsticks)
150ml white wine
80g kamalata olives, stones removed
500-700ml chicken stock or water
400g tin of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

Preheat the oven to 180C. Put the tomatoes in a roasting tin, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 mins or until they're concentrated and aromatic.

While the tomatoes are roasting heat a heavy based frying pan and add the butter, garlic and half the shallots and cook for 2 minutes, until they start to soften. Add the tarragon, mushrooms, a pinch of salt and some pepper. Sauté for around 5 minutes, until the mushrooms are tinged golden and start to release their moisture. Transfer to a bowl, stirring in the vinegar and chopped parsley, and remove the tomatoes from the oven.

Return the pan to the heat with 1 tbsp. olive oil. Add the chicken, skin side down, and fry until golden - turning once they are. Once all sides of the chicken are golden, transfer to a plate, add the remaining shallots to the pan and fry for around 4 minutes.

Deglaze the pan with the white wine, making sure you scrape up the crispy bits from the bottom of the pan. Place the chicken back in the pan, with the olives. Pour in the water or stock until it's covering the chicken and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 30-35 minutes.

Add the roasted tomatoes to the chicken pan and stir, then add the cannellini beans. Simmer for 5 minutes, then add the mushrooms and simmer for another 7-10 minutes. Garnish with tarragon leaves and serve with crusty bread and a nice green salad.

The chicken is beautifully juicy and tender, and the broth so rich and earthy. I couldn't stop adding more of the broth to my bowl, even after I'd finished the chicken.

As with all of Rosie's recipes, this was a winner. Easy to make after work, no ingredients that are too hard to find, and a real crowd pleaser. I'm so looking forward to making many more recipes from A Lot on her Plate. Get your copy here.



  1. The book sounds lovely, and the recipe you shared sounds and looks delicious! Definitely want to give it a try!

    The Velvet Black // UK Style & Beauty Blog

    1. Thanks Alice - it's one of those books where you really do want to cook all the recipes! Which I intend on doing...

      Rosie xx

  2. Well done it looks gorgeous! And healthy as well! I will definitely have a look.


    Céline from Larry & Co.

  3. This looks amazing! Do you think you could replace the white wine for something else?

    Becca x

    1. Thanks Becca - you definitely could. If it's a non alcoholic replacement you want I'd use a mixture of white wine vinegar (30-40ml) and lemon juice (30ml) to deglaze the pan, topped up with extra chicken stock.

      Rosie xx

  4. AWESOME pictures! I can almost taste the deliciousness form my desk... Lots of love, Andrea xxx


    1. Thank you Andrea! I got hungry again editing the photos for this post! It's such a great recipe :)

      Rosie xx

  5. Yummy this looks delicious. I love this kind of food Lucy x

    1. It's a beautiful book, am slowly working my way through cooking as many of the recipes as possible!

      Rosie xx


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