Tuscan Lemon Chicken

If you live in Seattle, it appears summer has left the building. Before it is totally gone and with Labor Day weekend coming up, I wanted to share my favorite grilled chicken recipe of the summer. Backing up a little, I wasn’t always the master griller I am today. Four short months ago I had never operated a grill on my own and was completely intimidated. I thought this was a guy job. I don’t currently have one of those. I decided it was about time to change my status – my grilling status. For Mother’s Day, my parents got me a Weber grill and it has been the best gift ever! I grill everything now! Steaks, chicken, lots of hotdogs for Oliver, veggies, salmon. Obsessed.

My first grilling project was Ina’s Tuscan Lemon Chicken. It is so delicious. I’ve probably made it six times this summer and it is just really good. I have made this a few ways, a whole chicken flattened as is in the recipe or cut up into eight pieces. The latter is the easier method and much less mess.  Read More

Salad Obsession – Jamie Oliver’s Everyday Green Chop

I had my cousin Hillary and her fiancé John over for dinner on Sunday and spent Saturday night watching Game of Thrones and flipping through cookbooks to menu plan. I love reading cookbooks. I had honestly forgotten how much. I get so programmed to look at blogs or the Food Network or Epicurious that I forget about my good ole cookbooks. I was perusing Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution and The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. I ended up selecting recipes from both, but the clear winner at dinner was the Everyday Green Chopped Salad. I think I am going to need to eat this salad at least once weekly for the forseeable future. So. fricking. good. It’s the perfect combination of crunch and vinegar and avocado.

Everyday Green Chopped Salad – courtesy of Jamie Oliver

Ingredients

  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • 2 avocados, diced
  • 4 green onions (both white and green parts)
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled and sliced
  • handful basil, sliced
  • freshly shaved parmesan
  • 3T olive oil
  • 1T red wine vinegar
  • 1t Dijon mustard
  • salt & pepper

Directions

  • Wash and roughly chop lettuce and put in a large bowl
  • After you’ve cut up the green onions, cucumber, basil, put them together and roughly chop up some more
  • Toss with the lettuce and coat well with dressing
  • Finish with fresh shaved parmesan

Serves 4

Total Cook Time – 20 minutes

This salad is perfect to serve with a lighter dinner, like halibut or salmon. Definitely worthy of guests. I served with Jamie Oliver’s Crunchy Garlic Chicken, Sauteed Asparagus, and Smitten Kitchen’s Roasted Potato and Carrot Coins.

 

 

 

 

 

Sizzling Chicken Fajitas

Apparently, my ego is still hurting from the rump roast, because I’ve really been taking my weeknight cooking up a notch in the past few days. I have been wanting to try tonight’s recipe since Smitten Kitchen posted back in March. Sizzling Chicken Fajitas, black beans, homemade pico de gallo and guacamole. This dinner ruled. Like, so unbelievably tasty, it was a shovel-fest. Even Oliver liked it. He didn’t eat the peppers or onions, but he liked the chicken, beans, guac. That’s ok, I’ll just eat his share. And then some.

Another thing I love about this meal, colorful! I love cooking with peppers.

Sizzling Chicken Fajitas courtesy of Deb Perelman

For the chicken:

  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs (though, frankly, a little more or less will be fine here)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (half a juicy lime)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Few dashes hot sauce, optional

Prepare chicken:

Slice chicken thighs into thin strips (1/4- to 1/2-inch wide). Place in bowl or freezer bag. Add lime juice and spices and mix together. Let marinate for 30 minutes or up to 2 days in the fridge.

To assemble:

  • 8 (6-inch) flour or corn tortillas
  • Olive oil
  • 2 large bell peppers, cut into thin strips (I use a mix of green, red and other colors, if I can find them)
  • 1 large yellow or sweet onion, halved and sliced thin
  • Coarse salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 250° and wrap tortillas in foil. Set on rack to warm. Set out fixings of your choice.

Heat your largest skillet (I use a 12-inch cast iron) on the highest heat. When very hot, drizzle in some olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan. When this is nearly smoking hot, add the peppers in a single layer. Wait. (This will be a theme.) Try to get them a little charred underneath before you move them around. Once they’ve begun to brown, add the onions, plus some salt. Wait again for some color to develop before you move them. When peppers are nicely charred in spots and onions have softened and sweetened, scrape mixture onto a plate or bowl to clear the skillet. Heat skillet again on a very high heat with a thin slick of olive oil. Spread chicken strips in as much of a single layer as you can. Wait until they brown underneath to move them. Sauté strips, regularly pausing so that they can get some color, until cooked through, about 4 to 5 minutes. Return peppers and onions to skillet. Heat again until everything is sizzling and bring to the table.

Eat immediately, spooned onto warm tortillas and piled with fixings of your choice. Repeat again tomorrow.

Fixings

  • 1 1/2 cup cooked black beans – I made my beans with cumin, salt, pepper and a few dashes of Cholula
  • Pico de Gallo – 3 roma tomatoes, minced garlic, lime juice, seeded jalapeño, cilantro, salt, pepper
  • Ina Garten’s Guacamole – avocados, minced garlic, lemon juice, chopped tomatoes, hot sauce, salt, pepper, chopped red onion
  • Shredded cheese or sour cream

If you’re entertaining this weekend, make it. If you’re not, make it. I promise, you will thank me.

Devirginizing the Kitchen – Skillet Rosemary Chicken

Yesterday was the first Sunday in a while that felt normal. Oliver and I woke up, snuggled on the couch for a movie, had my friend Courtney and her little guy Luca over, and did our Sunday grocery shopping. For dinner, I decided on one of my old faves, Skillet Rosemary Chicken and served with roasted kale.

One of the best additions in my new house is speakers in the kitchen and living room. I got the Sonos hooked up and had a little dance party while cooking. Oliver has some sweet moves, just sayin. I cannot even describe how much I love my new kitchen. It is so functional and beautiful and spacious, I feel like the luckiest lady ever. Cooking is a dream.

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Skillet Rosemary Chicken (courtesy of Food Network Kitchen)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 pound small red-skinned potatoes, halved, or quartered if large
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, plus 1 tablespoon leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Juice of 2 lemons (squeezed halves reserved)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts (6 to 8 ounces each)
  • 1lb cremini mushrooms, halved

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°. Cover the potatoes with cold water in a saucepan and salt the water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until tender, about 8 minutes; drain and set aside.
  2. Pile the rosemary leaves, garlic, 2 teaspoons salt and the red pepper flakes on a cutting board, then mince and mash into a paste using a large knife. Transfer the paste to a bowl. Stir in the juice of 1 lemon and the olive oil. Add the chicken and turn to coat.
  3. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken, skin-side down, cover and cook until the skin browns, about 5 minutes. Turn the chicken; add the mushrooms and potatoes to the skillet and drizzle with the juice of the remaining lemon. Stir things around so mushrooms and potatoes get coated by the sauce.
  4. Add the rosemary sprigs and the squeezed lemon halves to the skillet; transfer to the oven and roast, uncovered, until the chicken is cooked through and the skin is crisp, 20 to 25 minutes.

I can’t wait to see some of the search terms that come through after adding “devirginizing” to the post. Actually, I’m scared. You have no idea how many “best bloe job” (yeah, people who are searching for porn aren’t the best spellers) terms I see.