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    Chicken Saltimbocca

    Saltimbocca translates to “jumps in the mouth” or “hops in the mouth” so I guess you should make extra for your family or guests. There are many recipes out there however I think this one will prove quick and easy for any good cook.

    You will need:

    Chicken Breast — 1 6 or 8 oz/serving cut into cutlets.
    Prosciutto — enough to cover each cutlet (see recipe for more information).
    Fresh Sage Chiffonade (Instructions if needed) — the amount depends on your personal taste for this herb but make sure you don’t use too much as it might be off putting.
    White Wine — a good Chardonnay works well here plan on about 1/2 a bottle more or less.
    Olive Oil — 1 TBSP/cutlet
    Unsalted Butter — 1 TBSP/cutlet
    Shallots &#151 one small to medium bulb finely diced.
    Flour — approx. 2 TBSP

    As you’ve read in the ingredients part of this recipe we call for Chicken Cutlets. If you don’t have the patience or time for this bit you can ask your butcher but why pay the extra when it’s easy to do yourself. Place a chicken breast on a clean cutting surface if you are right handed point the narrow part to the right (reverse for left handed). With a sharp knife, preferably boning, following the angle of the narrow side carefully slice it at a thickness of 1/4″. Continue until the breast is cut, you might have a small piece left at the end. Continue with all of the breasts. Lightly rub a little olive oil over each cutlet, sprinkle with the Sage then cover with a piece of Prosciutto and affix with one or two toothpicks.

    In a sauté pan large enough to hold all or most of the cutlets add the butter and olive oil until the butter melts and the oil shimmers. Using a pair of tongs carefully place the cutlets, Prosciutto side down into the pan and cook just until prosciutto crisps which won’t take long so watch this step. Flip the cutlets and sauté briefly just enough to have the pink color disappear, remove from pan place on an oven proof plate, tent with foil, and keep warm.

    If there isn’t enough oil/butter in the pan add enough to sauté the shallots. When the shallots start to turn opaque sprinkle enough flour to just coat continue cooking until all of the flour is absorbed carefully add the white wine scraping up all the good bits left on the bottom of the pan. If the resulting sauce is too thick add a little warm water if it is too thin combine some softened butter and flour and add to the sauce. Place the chicken cutlets, Prosciutto side up into the sauce and warm through. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

    Buffalo Chicken Clubs

    Everyone has heard about Buffalo Wings, some like them hot some not so much. I like the taste yet always seem to want more of those tiny chicken pieces. I took the time tested favorite and made them a tad more satisfying.

    You will need:

    • Chicken Legs &#151 3/serving
    • Flour &#151 enough to coat legs
    • Peanut Oil &#151 enough to have &#188″ coating in sauté pan
    • Frank’s Hot Sauce &#151 approximately &#188 cup
    • Unsalted Butter &#151 &#8531 cup

    This first step isn’t mandatory however it gives the chicken legs a nice appearance and reduces the mess left on your guests fingers so take the time here you won’t regret it.

    With a sharp knife “French” the legs. This is done by making a cut all around the bone of the leg starting at a point just below the meat. Cut all the way through the skin and fat down to the bone then scrape everything off the bone leaving a club like leg with bare bone below. There will be some sinew that might be hard to remove but don’t worry it is easily pulled off once the chicken is cooked.

    Lightly dredge chicken in flour patting off any excess. In a sauté pan large enough to hold all pieces cook until legs have a nice golden crust, remove from pan, place on an oven proof pan and finish cooking in oven at 350&#176 F. In the interim put butter in a sauce pan and cook just until all the butter is melted, do not let it brown. Add hot sauce whisking vigorously to combine and emulsify. Put chicken in a bowl large enough to hold all of the pieces, add hot sauce mixture and toss or stir until well coated. Serve immediately.

    Leg before frenching.

    Frenched Leg

    Leg after protein is pushed up the bone to form a club.

    Lasagna Bianco

    I’ve prepared this dish on several occasions and always enjoyed this alternative to my other lasagna recipes. It’s versatile in that you can use either chicken, turkey or pork depending on your taste.

    You will need:

    Lasagna Noodles — one pound
    Bechamel Sauce — I’ve included an easy recipe in the preparation below. Or look for one on the drill down menu from Rouxbe after the recipe. You will need to double the quantity.
    Ground Chicken — 2 pounds. It’s best to grind your own meat. Purchase some chicken thighs (boneless or de-bone yourself) then put in a food processor and pulse chop until you get a coarse grind. Alternatively use pork or turkey.
    Fresh Oregano — 3 or 4 ounces
    Fresh Sage — 3 or 4 ounces
    Spaghetti Squash — one medium size, if you can’t find this unique squash you can replace with yellow squash although the texture and taste will differ slightly.
    Button Mushrooms — one pound
    Parmesan Cheese — approximately one cup
    Ricotta Cheese — one pound
    Olive Oil
    Sea Salt/White Pepper — approximately one TBSP each.

    If you are going to use dried lasagna noodles soak them in warm water just until softened, if you are going to use the no cook variety skip this step. Prepare Bechamel Sauce, here is an easy recipe to use. Cool, finely chiffonade the sage and stir into the sauce. Place ricotta cheese in a bowl and stir to loosen then finely chop the oregano and stir into the cheese.

    In a sauté pan large enough to hold all of the ground meat (chicken, turkey or pork) add a film of olive oil and heat until it shimmers. Cook the meat until some of the pink color is gone, you won’t need to cook it all the way through since it will finish cooking when the lasagna is baked. Cool and set aside. Place the squash in a 350° preheated oven and bake until softened. Cool on a rack and once cool enough to handle cut in half lengthwise, remove seed pod, and using a fork pull the flesh away from the skin, it will look like cooked spaghetti, thereby the name. If you are using yellow squash there is not need to precook however slice them to ¼” thick on the bias. Set aside.

    Now that all the prep work is done it’s time to assemble. Lightly oil a lasagna pan which is large enough to lay the noodles down lengthwise. Pour ½ cup of the bechamel sauce and spread evenly over the bottom. Place one layer of lasagna noodles over the sauce and then spread another ½ cup of sauce over them. Spread one or two cups of the meat over the sauce then add a layer of the cheese. Add a layer of noodles then spread half of the squash over the noodles, add a layer of bechamel then cheese. Repeat this process ending with a layer of the bechamel on top of the final layer of noodles, sprinkle liberally with parmesan cheese, cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake in a preheated 350° oven for one half hour, remove the foil and continue to bake until the top is nicely browned.

    As with my other lasagna recipes you should be able to get 12 servings by cutting it in 4 equal sections lengthwise and 3 equal sections width wise.

    Enjoy!

    Garlic/Sun Dried Tomato Slow Roast Chicken

    I was in the mood for a roast chicken so I went to my butcher and he had some nice plump fresh birds I got one that weighed around four pounds. When I returned to my abode I scoured the larder to see what I had since I didn’t want the old stand-by type roast chicken. I had some garlic that had to be used and found some sun dried tomato I forgot I had, shame on me. This recipe might seem a little tedious and time consuming but I think you will agree it’s worth the effort.

    You will need:

    One fresh whole chicken – as mentioned above mine weighed in at around 4 pounds but in this case weight doesn’t matter.
    Slivered Garlic – I used two cloves make sure that you slice them as thin as possible so they more or less melt when roasting.
    Sun Dried Tomato – I used approximately four halves again sliced/julienned as thinly as possible.
    Olive Oil – Enough to coat the tomato and garlic
    Sea Salt/Ground Pepper – to taste.

    Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Now you will need to loosen the skin on the bird this is done by carefully working your fingers in between the skin and the meat. I usually wear a pair of gloves for this but it’s not necessary as long as you completely wash your hands afterword. Don’t rush this or you will punch a hole or two in the skin, make sure you work around the breast and leg/thighs. Dry the bird thoroughly. Combine the garlic and tomato with the oil and salt/pepper.

    Now the fun part. Take several garlic slivers and tomato pieces and insert between the skin and flesh. Continue with this process until all of the garlic and tomato has been used. You want to make sure it’s distributed evenly and all over the bird. Rub a little olive oil on the skin and season lightly with salt and pepper. Place bird in an oven proof pan and put it into the oven, immediately turn the temperature down to 325 degrees F. The initial high temperature will set the skin and start the browning process. Roast the bird until a thermometer inserted into the thigh meat reads 165 to 170 degrees F. Put bird on a platter or carving board, loosely tent with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes. Carve and enjoy!

    Lemon/Fennel Chicken

    If you like that tang of lemon and the sweet taste of fennel this one is for you. I used chicken, however this would work as well with a good white fish. It is a simple fast preparation and I think you will like it as well.

    You will need:
    Chicken Breast – boneless/skinned approx. 6 to 8 oz/serving
    Fresh Lemon Juice plus zest- One good sized/serving
    Fresh Fennel Frond – approx. 1 TBSP/serving – use the bulb as a veggie side.
    Sea Salt/Pepper – to taste.
    Olive Oil

    In a sauté pan large enough to hold the chicken heat one TBSP/serving of the olive oil until it shimmers add breast(s) to hot oil and sauté until a rich brown color is achieved, flip breast over and continue until second side has a rich color also. Place breast on an oven proof dish and place into a pre-heated (350 F) oven until internal temperature reaches 160 F.

    Meanwhile, pour any oil from sauté pan squeeze as much juice as you can get out of each lemon and scrape up the fond left from the chicken, add the lemon zest and reduce to about half, add the fresh fennel frond to the sauce and cook for a few minutes more. Remove the chicken from the oven and add back into the sauté pan turning to coat. Place chicken on a serving dish and pour the lemon/fennel sauce over the top. Enjoy!

    Chicken Marsala


    This simple yet delicious recipe will make your dinner guest crave more. As a side I serve this with angel hair pasta aglio e l’olio (garlic/olive oil).

    You will need:
    Boneless/skinless chicken breast – approximately 6 ounces/person
    Flour
    Salt/pepper
    Olive Oil – approx. 1 TBS/serving
    Butter – approx. 1 TBS/serving
    Mushrooms – white button or crimini (sliced)- approx. 2 oz/serving
    Chicken broth – approx. 1/4 cup/serving
    Marsala wine – good quality approx. 2 TBS/serving

    Heat oven to 350° F. Place butter and olive oil in a sauté pan large enough to hold breasts without crowding, heat until butter melts. Dust chicken breasts with flour, pat off excess. Place breasts in sauté pan, presentation side down, sauté until a rich brown crust develops, turn breasts over and sauté until other side develops the same crust. Move breasts to a cookie sheet or oven proof pan to finish (internal temperature should read 160° F (time will be decided by the thickness of the breast pieces).
    If there is not enough oil/butter left in the pan add another tablespoon of each. Add cut mushrooms with approximately one tablespoon of flour to skillet and cook until browned and somewhat dry. Add Marsala wine and cook until wine is reduced by at least half, add chicken broth and continue to cook until reduced by half. At this stage season with salt and pepper to taste.
    Remove chicken from oven and add to the sauce, cover and simmer for approximately five minutes. Place breast on a serving platter and cover with sauce. Garnish with some parsley.

    Chicken Provençal* with Rice Mélange


    My version of a classic French sauce that can be used on either chicken or a firm white fish such as cod. The preparation time is relatively short and can be frozen for future use.

    You will need:
    Boneless skinless chicken breast* – approx. 6 oz./person
    Red bell pepper
    Onion (sweet such as Walla Walla)
    Canned diced tomato
    Capers
    Black olives, pitted
    Fresh Rosemary, thyme and parsley
    Unbleached flour
    Salt/Pepper
    Olive Oil

    Cut pepper and onion in half. Remove seed and core from pepper and skin and both ends from onion. Slice onion, pepper and olives very thin (Julienne in cooking terms), set aside. Drain tomatoes in a sieve reserve liquid. Tie fresh herbs into a bundle and place into a sauce pot with reserved tomato juice. Bring juice/herb mixture to a slow boil – remove herbs. Add onion and pepper to pot and cook until both are soft. If there is not enough liquid you can add water or dry white wine so that the liquid covers the vegetables. Add diced tomato, capers and olives to pot, cover and simmer for approximately ten minutes, keep warm.

    Heat oven to 350°. Place flour in a receptacle, pat chicken* dry, dredge in flour and pat off excess. In a sauté pan, large enough to hold chicken* without crowding, heat one teaspoon/breast of olive oil, sear chicken until just browned on both sides, put in oven to finish cooking until internal temperature is 160°.

    Remove chicken from oven spoon approximately 1/4 cup of sauce on each breast cover pan and let it rest for approximately ten minutes. The heat from the pan along with the sauce will finish the chicken. Serve with Rice Mélange.

    Rice Mélange

    For this recipe I used Rice Select Royal Blend. It is equal parts Texmati white, brown, red and wild rices.
    Finally chop herbs used in the chicken recipe. Cook rice according to package directions. When rice is cooked stir in herbs with a little butter. As an alternative you can purchase individual packages of these or other rices to make your own unique side dish.

    *Fresh Cod or other firm white fish can be substituted in place of the chicken.

    Cognac Orange Glaze

    This is a very simply prepared glaze that can be used on Ham, Chicken or Pork. The total cooking time is less than 10 minutes.

    You will need:

    Cognac (I used Hennessey VS) 2 TBS
    Orange Marmalade (I used Smuckers Simply Fruit) 1 cup
    Honey/Dijon Mustard (I used Plochman’s) 2 TBS + 1 tsp
    Habanero Pepper 1/2 with seeds (cut pepper in half lengthwise

    In a small sauce pot add cognac and habanero pepper bring to a boil to cook off alcohol. Add marmalade and honey/mustard. Turn heat down so that glaze just simmers, put on lid and cook for 5 minutes. Remove habanero pepper. As an alternative you can omit the pepper or use milder Jalapeno pepper. The glaze can be made ahead and reheated when needed. Brush glaze on ham, pork or chicken and roast as you would normally. You can re-glaze the meat half way through cooking time to enhance the flavor.

    Chicken Saltimbocca*

    Chicken Saltimbocca

    I took the classic Veal Saltimbocca recipe and adapted it for chicken. Unlike other Saltimbocca preparations I finely diced the sage and put it between the chicken breast and the prosciutto. Make sure that the chicken breast is butterflied and pounded to approximately 1/4″ or it will be undercooked.

    You will need:
    Boneless, skinless chicken breast (1 per person)
    Prosciutto (one or two thin slices per chicken breast)
    Fresh Sage
    Unsalted butter
    Olive Oil
    Dry white wine ( I used an unoaked chardonnay)
    Tomato Paste
    Salt & Pepper
    Flour

    Preparation:
    Place chicken breast flat side down on a clean cutting board. With a sharp boning knife carefully butterfly the breast at it’s thickest part. Place chicken breast between two lightly oiled sheets of plastic wrap and pound until it is approximately 1/4″ thick, repeat with all breasts being used. Finally chop fresh sage, chop enough to dust all breasts. The amount of sage used depends on your particular taste but beware that you can overpower the chicken if you use too much. Lightly dust the breast with flour shaking off excess flour. Sprinkle chopped sage over one side of the breast and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place prosciutto slices over chopped sage (use enough to completely cover chicken breast.

    In a sauté pan large enough to hold all the breasts heat butter and olive oil. When the oil/butter starts to foam gently place chicken, prosciutto side down, into sauté pan. Sear for approximately five minutes or until you notice a change in color of the chicken around the edges. Turn chicken over and sear on second side for another five minutes. Remove chicken from pan and hold, covered on a warm plate.

    Pour off any excess fat from pan and add white wine to deglaze (use about one quarter cup of white per chicken breast). Put one table spoon of tomato paste/chicken breast and swirl/stir until tomato paste dissolves and colors the wine. Drop two or three tablespoons of cold butter into wine/tomato paste combination. This procedure is called mounting the sauce. When butter is completely dissolved return chicken and any juices to the pan. Heat thoroughly (about 5 minutes). If your chicken breast is thicker than 1/4″ it will take a little longer for the chicken to cook through. You can use a meat thermometer (it should read no less than 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

    I serve this with thin spaghetti with olive oil and garlic.

    *Alternately you can use veal instead of chicken. Ask your butcher for veal for scallopini and follow recipe.

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