Grilled Herb Chicken with Red Onion Jam and an Outing

June 12th, 2015

Grilled Herb Chicken 1

With a little planning ahead, this was on the table in 15 minutes after I got home late the other night.  I marinated the chicken in herbs, olive oil and lemon juice before I left for the day and left instructions with David on how to make the red onion jam.  We accompanied this with fresh sweet corn and an orzo and spinach salad that I picked up at Whole Foods while I was out.  Dinner couldn’t have been easier or more delicious.

Antique Shop Greenville

I spent the day with my friend Penny (The Other Penny), from The Comforts of Home.  She has recently moved and it was the first chance that we had to get together this summer.  We spent a day antiquing and lunching in beautiful Greenville, SC.  Greenville is such a vibrant city with over 600 restaurants and many antique shops.  The above picture was taken at Southern Estates Antiques, Inc.  The vignette at the front door was very welcoming with cooling lemonade to greet us.

Antique cookbook holder

I spotted this metal cookbook stand and almost bought it.  I was curious about the word on the oval embellishment.  As it turns out, it is the French word for belt or a sash for the waist.  I would assume that this was originally a display stand for belts.  Now I am sorry that I didn’t buy it.

Passerelle Bistro Penny

After visiting several antique shops, Penny and I had lunch at Passerelle Bistro on the river in downtown Greenville.  It was our second time eating there. Even though the day was warm, the breeze off of the river made it pleasant to eat outside.

Trout on Toast

I had the Mountain Trout on Toast with Lemon Vinegar and Gribiche Sauce.

Passerelle Bistro Mussels

Penny had the Basquaise Mussels and Frites.  Lunch was delicious.  It is always a treat for us to get together.

Grilled Herb Chicken 2

This chicken with red onion jam was also delicious.  It would make a nice dish to serve on the 4th of July.

GRILLED HERB CHICKEN WITH RED ONION JAM (Saveur Magazine)

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CHICKEN:
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup minced parsley
¼ cup minced basil
2 tbsp. minced rosemary
2 tbsp. minced thyme
1 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
4 cloves garlic, minced
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded to ¼” thickness, halved

FOR THE RED ONION JAM:
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 large red onions, sliced thin
¾ cup dry red wine
½ cup sherry vinegar
½ cup sugar
¼ cup black raspberry liqueur, such as Chambord
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Make the chicken: Mix oil, parsley, basil, rosemary, thyme, chile flakes, garlic, and lemon juice and zest in a gallon-size resealable plastic bag; add chicken. Seal bag, and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour (or overnight).

2. Meanwhile, make the jam: Heat butter in a 12″ skillet over medium heat. Add onions; cook, stirring, until soft but not browned, about 15 minutes. Add wine, vinegar, sugar, liqueur, salt, and pepper; cook, stirring, until thick, about 40 minutes; let jam cool.

3. Build a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill or heat a gas grill to medium-high. (Alternatively, heat broiler to high.) Working in batches, grill chicken, turning once, until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes. Serve with jam.

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Crab Cakes with Cucumber Salad

June 4th, 2015

Crab Cakes with Cucumber Salad 1

Crab cakes are such a treat.  We rarely have them because of the exorbitant cost of crab meat.  You can buy premixed crab cakes at most Super Markets these days, but I find that they have too much breadcrumb filler.  But, I still think that some filler is an added bonus and does not take away from the sweet taste of the crab meat.  The idea is to achieve a balance, especially when you have three kinds of diced peppers in the mixture.

Crab Cakes with Cucumber Salad 3v

A wonderful cooling ingredient in this recipe is the cucumber salad that compliments the crab cakes perfectly.  We found this to be a perfect meal with grilled sweet corn.  I even had the crab cakes the next day for lunch with a tossed salad.

Crab Cakes with Cucumber Salad 2v

I feel like I owe all of you an update on my health issues.  My sprained ankle has healed.  I still need surgery to remove plates and pins in my leg, but I can probably wait until later to have it done.  We have so much going on this summer and a 3 week trip to Italy in September that it is one of those things that I thought could wait until the quiet months of late fall to confront.  When life is so full, why mess it up with surgery?  My Doctor agrees.  Thanks to all of you for your support.

These crab cakes with cucumber salad are worth your attention.  Hope everyone is having a wonderful summer.  We have a beach party on the shores of Lake Lure this Saturday with The Ocean Boulevard Band performing.  If you have never heard of beach music or dancing “the shag”,  it originated in Myrtle Beach, SC. and is popular in our area.  Our Lake Lure Association president is Garrett Humphries.  Here is a you tube video of his award winning dancing. David and will try to keep up.  Ha!

CRAB CAKES WITH CUCUMBER SALAD

Cucumber Herb Salad:
2 cups cucumber, seeded and julienned
2 teaspoons fresh dill, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh tarragon, finely chopped (or 1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon)
1 teaspoon fresh Italian parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Crab Cakes:
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons hot sauce
1/4 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/4 green bell pepper, finely diced
1/4 yellow bell pepper, finely diced
1 pound jumbo lump crab meat
1 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

In a medium serving bowl, mix cucumber, herbs, lemon juice and oil until cucumber is completely coated; season with salt and pepper to taste.  Set aside until ready to serve.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  In a large mixing bowl, gently combine all crab cake ingredients except olive oil.  Using a 1/4 cup, measure out 16 cakes.  Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large non-stick saute pan over medium heat.  Sear 4 to 6 cakes until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Turn crab cakes over and sear for an additional 2 minutes.  Place on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining oil and crab cakes.  Bake in oven for about 6 to 8 minutes and serve over Cucumber Herb Salad.

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Mashed Potato Casserole and Other Ramblings

May 15th, 2015

Mashed Potato Casserole 1

Allow me to ramble a bit.  This will be a rather disjointed post.  It seems I have been snapping pictures willy nilly with no particular theme in mind.  We did have this mashed potato casserole last week.  David was grilling ribs and I knew that the timing for dinner would remain up in the air.  There are many steps involved in his rib recipe.  So, as not to worry about the mashed potatoes, I turned them into a casserole that could be kept warm in the oven.  The topping of breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese and butter was delicious.

Porch Tulips 1

Yesterday we had an old friend from our college days over for lunch.  She has moved close to our area and we had the best time catching up with each other.  I set the table on the porch, and although it was cool, we enjoyed being outside.

Porch Couscous

Our lunch included Ina Garen’s Couscous and Tuna Salad.  You can find the recipe here.

Porch Salad

I made a simple tossed salad with Spring greens, mandarin oranges, raspberries and almonds and these focaccia breadsticks with an oil and balsamic vinegar dipping sauce.

Porch Sign

David took me out to lunch for Mother’s Day at a small town near us.  After lunch we browsed in several antique shops.  I found this “Antiques” sign.  It is obviously not old, but it looks great hanging on my porch.

Lake Lure House Spring 1

I also found this colorful hanging basket to hang at the entrance to the cottage.

Potato Casserole 2v

MASHED POTATO CASSEROLE

6 medium baking potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 to 1 cup half and half or cream
A large handful of chives, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

For the topping:
1/3 cup Italian style breadcrumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 tablespoon melted butter

Place potatoes in a large saucepan with water to cover.  Add a generous teaspoon of salt.  Bring to bowl and cook until tender.  Drain potatoes.  Add butter and enough half and half to mash into a creamy consistency.  Add chives and mix in.

Grease a casserole dish.  Add potato mixture.

Mix together the topping ingredients.  Spread over potatoes.  Place in a preheated 350 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Can be held in a warm oven until needed.

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Pomegranate Grilled Chicken

May 8th, 2015

Pomegramate Chicken 1

We are so happy that grilling season is here again.  One of the first recipes I wanted to try was this pomegranate marinated chicken.  It calls for pomegranate molasses.  That was an ingredient that I had never heard of before.  It turns out, it is not easy to find.  But Whole Foods carries it and if you look online you can actually make it yourself.  Here is a link.  It is nothing more than pomegranate juice, sugar and lemon juice reduced down to a syrup.  The tangy syrup goes very well with grilled chicken.  The bottle that I found was actually called pomegranate syrup.

Pomegranate Chicken 3V

Add a cluster of pomegranate arils and you have a pretty spectacular dish.  And speaking of spectacular, our weather has been perfect this week.  We’ve had cool mornings, temperatures in the high 70’s in the afternoon, and evenings warm enough to eat on the porch.  The lake has been busy with boat traffic and a few brave souls are water skiing in wet suits.  One of the newest sports on the lake is paddle boarding.  It looks so peaceful to see a lone person standing on a board, paddling along the quiet shoreline in the morning.

Pomegranate Chicken 2

This dish was a good introduction to grilling season.  It pairs well with  so many summer sides; pasta salad, grilled corn, coleslaw or potato salad.  I hope this has gotten everyone in the mood for summer.  I am ready.

POMEGRANATE CHICKEN (What Katie Ate on the Weekend )

12 skinless boneless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat
Pomegranate Molasses, Mint and pomegranate seeds, to serve

Pomegranate Molasses Marinade:
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup pomegranate molasses
juice of 1 lemon
3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
2 sprigs mint, leaves picked and very finely chopped (I used basil leaves)
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the marinade, place all the ingredients in a pitcher or bowl and whisk to combine.  Pour into a large resealable plastic bag, add the chicken thighs, then seal and shake to combine.  Marinate in the fridge for at least 6 hours ( or overnight if possible).

Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat until hot.  Cook the chicken thighs for 5 to 6 minutes on each side or until golden brown and cooked through.

Drizzle over some extra pomegranate molasses, then serve hot, scattered with mint and pomegranate seeds.  Serves 4 to 6.

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Kale and Red Onion Galette

April 24th, 2015

Vegetable Galette 4

While scooting around the grocery store the other day in my motorized cart (Still have difficulty walking with this sprain), I decided to load up with some convenience foods.  To me, convenience food means frozen vegetables, ready made pie crusts, salad greens, ground beef, hamburger buns and Rao’s marinara sauce.  I am on my own for the next two weeks so I can indulge in my preferences.  I love savory pastry dishes and a galette is nothing more than a free form rustic tart.

Vegetable Galette 1

 

In my effort to be somewhat healthy, I combined frozen baby kale, sauteed red onions, and frozen cubed carrots in a filling for my Pillsbury pastry round.  I actually added a small amount of left over spicy sausage, but it could be left out.  What is so great about this type of meal is that you can use anything that you like in the filling.

Vegetable Galette 2

Cooking for one does not have to be an unpleasant experience.  I see pasta marinara and grilled hamburgers in my future.  But that’s after I finish this lovely galette with my salad greens.  It might take me a while.

KALE AND RED ONION GALETTE

1 12oz. package frozen baby kale, thawed and squeezed dry
1 large red onion, halved and sliced into half rounds
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup Alexia’s frozen organic cubed carrots, thawed
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 round of Pillsbury refrigerated pie dough
1 beaten egg for egg wash, mix with a little water

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Saute’ red onion in the oil in a medium size frying pan.  Turn to low and cook slowly until the onions are soft and slightly caramelized.  Add the dried kale and the carrots.  Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Let cool slightly.

Place the pastry round on a parchment lined baking sheet.  Mound the filling in the middle of the pastry leaving at least a 1-inch border.  Fold the pastry over the filling, pleating as you go.  Brush the pastry with the egg wash.

Place in preheated oven and bake for approximately 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.

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© Penny Klett, Lake Lure Cottage Kitchen. All rights reserved.