Pecan Chicken on a Bed of Swiss Chard

This is not shake in bake no matter how much it looks like it

This is not shake in bake no matter how much it looks like it

This recipe makes use of fresh Swiss chard. If it is not in season yet then wait. Swiss chard is similar in taste to spinach but tougher like kale. The stems need to be cooked longer than the leaves and taste a lot like celery.

Pecan Crusted Chicken with Wilted Swiss Chard

  • 2 chicken breasts deboned and skinned
  • 1/2 cup pecans ground to a powder
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/8 cup Romano
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 1 egg beaten with 2 tbsp white wine
  • 1 head Swiss chard
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • Salt/pepper

Wash greens and tear leaves into large bites from the stems. Chop stems into small dice. Season chicken with salt and pepper and let stand for 15 minutes. Place meat into egg wash and let stand five minutes. Mix pecans, breadcrumbs, dill and cheese together. Season with salt and pepper. Shake off excess liquid and roll meat in coating. Place on a greased baking dish and bake at 365 degrees until chicken is done, about 40 minutes. When chicken is close heat olive oil in a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add stems and saute until softened, about five minutes. Add garlic and saute one minute. Add wine, deglaze pan and bring to a high simmer. Reduce by half, then add torn leaves and stock. Bring to a simmer, turn heat to low and cover partially. Continue to cook leaves until liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Serve chicken on top of a bed of cooked greens.

Posted in Chicken, Dinner, Food, Garden, Recipes | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Sunday Suppers: Easter’s Coming

We’ll have a budget-friendly Easter meal next week. This week, we’re going fancy pants.

Roasted Lamb with Fennel

So moist and tender

So moist and tender

Lemon Asparagus

The lemon is really good after roasting

The lemon is really good after roasting

Duchess Potatoes

My oh my potato pie

My oh my potato pie

Challah

So pretty

So pretty

Lemon Bars

They are like pie on a cookie

They are like pie on a cookie

Posted in Dessert, Dinner, Food, Sides | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

How to Split a Chicken

Ready for the grill

Ready for the grill

Spatchcocking a chicken is a great method for cooking a whole chicken on a barbecue, especially if you do not want to smoke it. By splitting the bird in half the cooking time is shortened and the meat cooks more evenly over the fire. You still want to use indirect heat to cook the bird, and it will take an hour at least to be done. There is no need to brine a split chicken but many types of marinades and spice rubs can be applied before grilling.

The start

The spine is in the center

To begin remove giblets, extra fat and rinse the chicken well in cold water. Flip it on the breasts and find the spine.

Is a chicken more chicken if it is spineless

Is a chicken more chicken if it is spineless

Using kitchen shears remove the entire spine. The bones are small and easily cut on both sides of the spine. Then look for the white diamond in the center of the breasts. This is the keel (breast) bone.

Make sure to cut slowly

Make sure to cut slowly

Slowly cut between the keel bone and arm joint of the chicken. Be sure not to slice all the way down or you will cut the chicken into two pieces. Score along the keel bone on each side until it is removed from the breast meat. Do not cut the wishbone out, it is what holds the two halves together. The chicken is now done and should lie flat.

The keel bone removed

The keel bone removed

 

Posted in Chicken, Grilling/Smoking, How to | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Artisian Crackers

Hey where are the cherries

Hey where are the cherries?

These crackers are really cheap, easy to make and taste great.

Making cracker dough is very similar to pie crust and is a great way to improve your skills at making pastry.

Rosemary Crackers

  • 2 cups – 2 tbsp unbleached white flour
  • 2 tbsp corn meal
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary crumbled into fine pieces
  • 3/4 tsp sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup hot water

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Mix all dry ingredients together. Cut butter into flour until it resembles coarse crumbs. Add water slowly until a rough dough forms. You may not need the entire half cup. Gently knead dough for a minute into a smooth ball. Cut dough into four pieces and let rest 10 minutes. On a well-floured surface roll out one piece of dough until it is paper thin and the counter can be seen through it. Transfer dough to a greased baking sheet. Slice sheet of dough with a pizza cutter into small squares. Bake until crackers are light brown on the edges and crispy, about 10 minutes. Continue to roll out dough and bake until all crackers are done. Let cool on a wire rack before storing in an airtight container.

Posted in Appetizers, Food, Recipes, vegetarian | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Gingered Prosecco

 

 

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Cheers!

Our 11th wedding anniversary is just around the corner and spring is finally here so we have reason to celebrate. This bubbly drink came straight from Martha, not that we’re on a first-name basis with her. We used a Prosecco, but any dry bubbly will do. Make sure to taste it before adding the syrup, since that calls for quite a bit of sugar. We still have some leftover ginger syrup and can’t wait to use it in other cocktails.

Posted in Recipes, Spirits | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Asian Fusion Slaw

Asian mixed with southern

Asian mixed with southern

This recipe works well as a side for barbecue or stir fry. The flavors of the raw cabbage and Asian ingredients really work well. Chopped peanuts or cilantro can be added as well.

Asian Coleslaw

  • 1 small green cabbage cored and sliced into thin ribbons
  • 1 large carrot grated
  • 1/2 sweet onion sliced paper thin then quartered
  • 2 tbsp sushi rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2-4 squirts Sriracha sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds

Mix the vegetables together in a large bowl. In another bowl mix everything else but sesame seeds. Pour dressing over cabbage and mix well. Refrigerate for an hour, then top with sesame seeds and serve.

 

 

Posted in Food, Recipes, Sides, vegetarian | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Creamy Stovetop “Risotto”

This is not risotto

This is not risotto

Risotto is one of our favorite, favorite, favorite, favorite, favorite meals. Sometimes though we want the starch to be a side, not the meal’s star. But if we have risotto as a side we don’t have time for all that stirring and we’re short a few eyes. A stovetop version solves those issues. This also is way, way better than your average white rice.

Did we mention risotto is our favorite?

Creamy Stovetop Risotto

  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 16 ounces chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1/2 tbsp dried sage or oregano
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, minced

In a three-quart stockpan melt one tablespoon butter and the olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add rice and stir to coat. Pour in broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until rice is tender and liquid is cooked off, about 20 minutes. Uncover and turn off heat. Stir in remaining butter, herbs and cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Serve hot.

We don’t think you’ll have leftovers, but if you do try making baked risotto balls:

Herb butter would also make a good filling

Herb butter would also make a good filling

Or have a cake!

It's a cake

It’s a cake

Posted in Food, Dinner, Sides, Italian, Rice/Risotto | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments