Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Eating In

Sorry again about the hiatus... we all got sick- again! Anyways, last week me and Avi went to see In The Heights (great, by the way), and we ate at Wolf & Lamb, which, was totally overrated and we were very disappointed! The show definitely made up for the less than impressive anniversary dinner, our anniversary being, TODAY! It's FREEZING and 2 years ago on our wedding day it was sunny and 60 degrees. Yup, global warming? I think not (I think that reference makes sense. If not, just ignore it :-).

So, my goal was to recreate the meal but make it MUCH BETTER!!!!! I got chicken breast stuffed with mushroom and asparagus with "herb roasted tomato"- the chicken was basically a TOTALLY under-seasoned 4 biter, with one roasted cherry tomato on the side. Avi got a hangar steak with chimichurri, though there was barely any flavor there. 2 weeks ago I made stuffed chicken for the first time. I did it with dark meat chicken on the bone, and stuffed the stuffing (for lack of a better word) under the skin. The next week I tried the same method but on very thinly pounded white meat chicken cutlets- much better! It's a healthier take on chicken pastrami roll-ups. It came out delicious. So even though it was prior to our meal at Wolf & Lamb, I'd definitely prefer that over their stuffed chicken version any day. Then, for Shabbos I made hangar steak with my own version of chimuchurri and I think it came out great! So here goes:

Stuffed Chicken Breast
-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
-1 onion, diced
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-3 cups fresh spinach, chopped
-salt & pepper
-Duck sauce
-Mayonnaise or olive oil
-Cornflake crumbs

-Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
-Butterfly and pound the chicken cutlets until very thin
-Brush a light layer of mayonnaise (keeps the chicken moist) or drizzle with olive oil if you don't want the extra calories, salt & pepper
-Saute the onion and garlic until lightly browned, and then add the spinach, sprinkle of salt, and let wilt
-Evenly distribute the mixture at the end of the 4 cutlets, and roll up.
-Transfer to a baking dish, pour duck sauce on top and sprinkle cornflake crumbs
-Bake for 20-25 minutes until cooked through (juices run clear)

[The exact same thing can be done using bone chicken. just under the skin with very little mayonnaise, and then stuff it. Pour duck sauce and cornflake crumbs on the top. I like to sit the chicken on orange slices.]

Stuffed Boned Chicken View #!:
 View #2:
 Stuffed Boneless Chicken Breasts

Chimichurri Sauce
Note: Chimichurri is a traditional Argentinian (I think) green sauce made with parsley, though many variations can be made using different base herbs like cilantro, for instance. It's traditionally made with red pepper flakes, though I chose to forgo the spicy. I used dried parsley because that was all I had (I keep a big Costco container in the fridge), obviously Julia Child is rolling in her grave but whatever! Next time I promise to use fresh parsley :-). My mini food processor came in SO handy for this recipe. If you have a mortar and pestle (I've always been meaning to get one, it looks so cool!) then that'd work for this too- for smashing the parsley and garlic together.

-1 cup packed parsley (not the stems), chopped
-4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped (the food processor will do the fine chopping)- I like it more garlicky, though you can play it by ear. Remember that the strong garlic flavor will cook off when you cook the meat.
-1/2 cup olive oil
-3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
-salt & pepper

-I used to hangar steak which is a great tender cut of meat, similar in taste to skirt steak, our favorite. On the expensive side, but so good. Usually it comes in one steak but for some reason mine unfortunately came butchered into pieces without me realizing when I bought it.
-Marinate the steak in the chimichurri for a few hours.
-Spray a large skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat over medium high heat
-Add the steak and all the sauce
-It will take approximately 6 minutes per side, but depends on the thickness of the meat and how you like it.
-(The meat can also be broiled, but I find it pulls the flavor out too much and can burn)

I love to eat out, even though I love to make my own delicious food. But sometimes it's just not worth it!! I'd give the place another chance, though, as long as they decide to season their chicken next time!!! Plus, any restaurant that has to ask you if you want complimentary bread 20 minutes after your order is taken, is not on my good list!!!!! 

Now, what should I make for dinner tonight????

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