There are these Sundays, which are an extension of Saturday night bashes. When I say ‘bash’, hold on…do not think of it as loud music with wild dances, noises which can wake your neighbor up and report to the security of the housing society. Well, our kind of ‘bash’ happens between 3 – 5 very close friends, without or marginally getting on the verge of being sloshed out, discussing on the rarest topics on earth – like what’s the greatest hit of Md. Aziz Munna (people from my age really don’t like him that much but if you google, you will find lots of hit songs credited to him from Bollywood film music in 80’s), rarest trivia of Bengali films and so on. So the Sunday after these Saturdays are more or less the calm after the storm. Little or no experimentation in food. The Breakfast is little less adventurous and exciting, the lunch is kept simple so that the digestive tract is less challenged and sleeping and rejuvenating energy for the next week is more in the focus.

Read – An easy recipe of  Morning breakfast after a wild party

So by the time its evening, both of us are charged up once again, almost to realise that we just cannot let the Sunday go by without anything special on the menu. Normally on a Sunday, other than the colour of the Kosha Mangsho, I dare take any call on the food of the house. Madhushree and I always say that food is the HCF of our marriage and music is the LCM. ( Remember the HCF and LCM from school ? Yes its the same). It was one of the Sundays, late in the evening with a hectic week ahead, Madhushree cooks this surprise. A quick, easy to make recipe.

Baked chicken with basil and tomatoes ready

Ready baked chicken with basil and tomatoes

Baked Chicken with Basil and Tomatoes

A very simple recipe, which is a bit of a twist from the Italian chicken recipe of Donna Hay. I (Madhushree) love reading lot of recipe books and try to innovate with ingredients easily found in India. With lack of time and a toddler running around, recipes like this one are a blessing. You can serve this with some bread and some side salad. We had it with this awesome cheese called ‘Burrata’, which we had picked up from the Farmers’ Market at Kolkata from Karen Anand herself.

ReadDid you know Karen Anand carries spices in her suitcase while travelling abroad ? 

Prep Time: 5- 10 mins

Cooking Time: 45- 50 minutes


Chicken A Whole Bird** Whole Garlic Cloves 8- 10
Basil Leaves A handful Olive Oil For drizzling
Tomatoes 2 Large Salt and Pepper For Seasoning
Flour 1 ½ tsp Grated Parmesan For Sprinkling

** Cut into usual 8 pieces, using only the 2 thighs with back portion, 2 breast halves with ribs and back portion. You may or may not use the drum sticks.

Sauce pouring in Baked chicken with basil and tomatoes


  • Wash the chicken pieces and pat them dry.
  • Pre heat the oven at 200 degrees Centigrade
  • In a large roasting tray, place the garlic cloves, the tomatoes cut up in quarters (after deseeding) and then the chicken on top.
  • Sprinkle salt and drizzle olive oil.
  • Place this in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes.
  • After that, take it out and add the basil leaves and sprinkle pepper.
  • Pop it back in the oven for another 15 – 20 minutes or until the chicken is tender.
  • In case you are not sure, use a kitchen thermometer to figure out if your chicken is done or not. At 165 degrees C, at the deepest part of the chicken its cooked.
  • Take out the tray and place on a serving plate. Grate fresh parmesan over it.
  • Use the left over juices in the roasting pan for a smooth sauce.
  • In a sauce pan, lightly roast the flour and then add all the scraps and roasting juices. Season with salt and drizzle over the baked chicken or keep in a bowl separately.
  • Serve the baked chicken with some breads and nice cheeses.
Baked chicken with basil and tomatoes served

Baked chicken with basil and tomatoes served