Saturday, August 23, 2008

Here's a good one for a hot summer day...

Thanks Em....
Tequila Lime Chicken
1/2 cup gold tequila (guess what to do with the rest???)
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (5 to 6 limes)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (2 oranges)
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon minced fresh jalapeno pepper (1 pepper seeded)
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic (3 cloves)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 whole (6 split) boneless chicken breasts, skin on

Combine the tequila, lime juice, orange juice, chili powder, jalapeno pepper, garlic, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken breasts. Refrigerate overnight.Heat a grill with coals and brush the rack with oil to prevent the chicken from sticking. Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade, sprinkle well with salt and pepper, and grill them skin-side down for about 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn the chicken and cook for another 10 minutes, until just cooked through. Remove from the grill to a plate. Cover tightly and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

It's peach season

I am not a huge fan of peaches...the fuzzy skin gets to me, but grilled that's another story. I found this recipe on my recipes, but I will admit I was insprired by a story in GQ of all places.

Grilled Peaches with Vanilla Ice Cream
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
4 fresh peaches
olive oil (or vegetable oil)
vanilla ice cream

In a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut peaches along the seam all the way around and twist halves off the pit. Brush cut sides with oil. Cook, cut side down, on a hot grill until fruit has grill marks, 3 to 4 minutes. Brush tops with oil, turn over, and move to indirect heat. Sprinkle cut sides with cinnamon sugar. Cover grill and cook until sugar is melted and fruit is tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream (sprinkle on extra cinnamon sugar if you like).

New York Green Beans

The NY Times is a staple in my parent's house and Wednesday is my personal favorite as the food section never fails to inspire. As I mentioned, I was home last week and stumbled upon this tasty very summer-like bean recipe.

2 pounds of sausages -- Wegman's was our choice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red onion, thinly sliced -- ours was a spectacular onion from the Apple Shed
4 fresh thyme sprigs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of sugar
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
1 pound green or wax beans (use a combination for the prettiest dish), trimmed
1/4 cup white wine -- 80/20 I only had some red, but it worked
1/2 cup chopped mixed fresh herbs, including basil and parsley
Fleur de sel or coarse sea salt, for serving (optional).
1. Prepare grill or preheat broiler. Grill or broil sausages until browned and blistered and cooked all the way through.
2. Meanwhile, prepare beans. Heat oil in a large skillet with a cover until shimmering. Add onion, thyme sprigs and a pinch each of salt, pepper and sugar. Sauté over medium-high heat until onions are golden in spots and browned around edges, about 7 minutes.
3. Add tomatoes and sauté until they start to release their juices, 2 minutes. Add beans and wine and toss everything in pan. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 3 minutes. Uncover pan, add herbs and continue to cook. Toss beans occasionally, until liquid evaporates and beans are done to taste, 5 to 30 minutes, adding water to pan if it dries out. Garnish with coarse salt if you like and serve hot or at room temperature, with sausages.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Sweet Basil! I loved this book.

A great way to conduct problem solving and fun too!

Think...visual thinking that takes your mind to the problem solving promised land in clever, fun, and effective ways."

Grilled "steamed" clams

So, I am hanging out with my parents this week....enjoying a small town and loving Wegmans, particularly their farm-raised little neck clams.
1. Rinse clams well in cold water; discard any that are broken or open.
2. Prepare a grill. Arrange the clams on a rack. Cook just until the shells open, about 5 to 10 minutes. (I threw a small wet towel over them to create more steam.)
3. Serve the clams in the shells, with bowls of , melted butter, lemon, and hot pepper sauce, if desired.
4. If they do not open, do not eat them.

Unusual but good crostini...

Every August, I attend a gathering of old friends in Wayne County, New York. Each year, it becomes a little less about the adults and little more about the kids as we have all added to our families year after year. The food has also evolved...from chips and hotdogs to elegant cheese trays and hors dourves. I found this one in a checkout line cookbook...never would have combined these on my own and it was delicious.
1 baguette (I used wheat.)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp. butter
3/4 cup mascarpone
1/2 cup of pistachios (80/20...I confess that used almonds as they were a lot less $$$.)
1/4 cup honey
handful of basil, chopped
Slice the baguette into 1/2 rounds, spread out on a cookie sheet. Melt the butter and olive oil together and using a pastry brush, spread over the rounds. Toast in the over under the broiler for about 2-3 minutes...till crispy. Top with a layer of mascarpone, drizzle with honey and almonds and top with a few pieces of basil. The mascarpone will melt a little if the rounds are still hot...which is ideal. (Otherwise you can put the rounds back in the oven on a very low temp to melt the cheese slightly. )