Sunday, July 5, 2009

Sunday Dinner 7-5-09

The Menu:
Lemon Parmesan chicken (In Garlic) Orzo pasta salad Garlic herb twists and (ready?) Quintuple Chocolate Brownies.

Shall we begin?

First off, pretend there are gorgeous pictures. I suck at plating and I forgot to take pictures until the last minute due to a gigantic rush due t. Deal. I promise more pictures next week.

Lemon Parmesan chicken (In Garlic)

You will need:
  • 4.5 ounces fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (grated)
Mix everything together in a bowl. (I love easy prep!)
Toss in your chicken breast and let marinate for 8-12 hours (up to 24. Keep it in the fridge, please). DO NOT DUMP YOUR MARINADE WHEN YOU SEAR YOUR CHICKEN OR ALL WILL BE LOST!

To cook:
Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
Pan-sear your chicken until brown.
Throw like 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil into a skillet and heat until smoking. Place a chicken breast in oil and cook until brown (usually about 2-3 minutes). Flip . Rinse, repeat.

Once you've got your chicken seared up, throw some of the marinade into a shallow baking pan (like a jelly roll) and bake chicken until cooked through. (20-25 minutes). Halfway through, flip the chicken over and use a baster to dump some of the marinade on top.
I sprinkled on sea salt, lemon zest and ground pepper to bump up the flavor a little.
Garnish with a tomato (if you're into that sort of thing)

Garlic Herb Twists:
Also super fly easy!

Note: I made these the night before and regretted it. They are MUUUUCH better fresh. Thought to ponder.

So. You will need:
  • 1 tablespoon rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 2 lb pizza dough.
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

I used my calzone dough recipe and it turned out awesome sauce. To make twists: make dough as specified, and roll out into a large rectangle. Cut into 2 inch strips and twist from top to bottom. (They are gonna stretch out like CRAZY. Be warned. I ended up with some that were 15 inches long. That is too long. Cut accordingly!)

Place on a baking sheet and bake in oven until browned (20-25 minutes). While they're baking, mix up some garlic oil.

Make your own garlic oil:
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese.
Combine all into bowl. Let sit. (I LOVE EASY PREP!)

Once your twists are browned, brush garlic oil onto tops of twists. Delicious.

Orzo Pasta Salad:

SUPER delicious warm or cold.

You will need:

1 box orzo pasta
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 tomatoes (any kind!)
FRESH Parsley, basil, cilantro, green onions to taste

Make orzo as specified on box (I threw in 1 TBSP butter to help with sticking).
While that's going on, chop tomatoes into bite size pieces, along with all of your fresh herbs.
When orzo is done, toss with red wine vinegar, olive oil and your tomatoes and herbs.
Set aside to cool and then serve.

Quintuple Chocolate Brownies

These are...AMAZING. Just...Holy cow.
I got this recipe from Tuesdays with Dorie, but I modified it slightly. Here is the recipe verbatim with my modifications. (Because, you know, 5 kinds of chocolate just isn't good enough for me).
NOTE: my modifications/notes are in BOLD

(Source: Dorie Greenspan “Baking: From My Home to Yours” pp. 99-100)

For the Brownies:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 Tablespoons strong coffee*
I replaced the coffee with 1 tablespoon of chocolate syrup and 1 tablespoon of water.

1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla
6 ounces premium-quality milk chocolate, chopped into chips, or 1 cup store-bought milk chocolate chips

For the Glaze:
6 ounces premium-quality white chocolate, finely chopped, or 1 cup store-bought white chocolate chips
1/3 cup heavy cream

This is WAY not enough topping. I bought one 12 ounce package of white chocolate chips and used the whole thing. Also, don't bother with the cream. Just melt the chocolate and spread over the brownies. The "glaze" is all watery and lame. I did it my way and got a 1/2 inch of solid delicious on top of my brownies. Solid chocolate FTW

Getting Ready:
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with foil, butter the foil and place the pan on a baking sheet.

Sift together the flour, cocoa, and salt.

To Make the Brownies:
Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and add, in the following order, the butter, the two chocolates and the coffee. Keeping the pan over low heat, warm just until the butter and chocolates are melted – you don’t want the ingredients to get so hot they separate, so keep an eye on the bowl. Stir gently, and when the mixture is smooth, set it aside for 5 minutes.

Using a whisk or a rubber spatula, beat the sugar into the chocolate mixture. Don’t beat too vigorously – you don’t want to add air to the batter – and don’t be concerned about any graininess. Next, stir in the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla. You should have a smooth, glossy batter. If you’re not already using a rubber spatula, switch to one now and gently stir in the dry ingredients, mixing only until they are incorporated. Finally, stir in the milk chocolate chips . Scrape the batter into the pan.

Bake for about 35 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted into the center comes out streaked but not thickly coated. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and let the brownies rest undisturbed for at least 30 minutes. (You can wait longer, if you’d like.)

Turn the brownies out onto a rack, peel away the foil and place it under another rack – it will be the drip catcher for the glaze. Invert the brownies onto the rack and let cool completely.

To Make the Glaze:
Put the white chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Bring the heavy cream to a boil and pour it over the chocolate. Wait 30 seconds, then, using a rubber spatula, gently stir until the chocolate is melted and the glaze is smooth.


Hold a long metal icing spatula in one hand and the bowl of glaze in the other. Pour the glaze onto the center of the brownies and use the spatula to nudge it evenly over the surface. Don’t worry if it dribbles over the edges, you can trim the sides later (or not). Refrigerate the brownies for about 20 minutes to dry the glaze.

BLah Blah blah......

Cut into 16 squares, each roughly 2-1/4 inches on a side.

That is way too small. Eat the whole pan if you want, life is an adventure. Enjoy it.

And that is this weeks dinner!!!

Stay tuned for more Adventures.

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