Sunday, December 17, 2006

Mushroom and Tomato Lasagne

I must be crazy to attempt this recipe. It's from the Food & Wine 2001 cookbook (I always get their year-end cookbooks, even though I no longer subscribe) and it took something like 5 bowls, 4 pots and 3 1/2 hours to make. It's not even done yet, and I started cooking it at 4:30 -- it is now 7:30. Here's hoping it's worth it!

On Friday, we had the M's over for supper and play, which was lovely. I hit 40 hours at 4:15 on Friday, and left promptly to swing by Whole Foods and pick up a couple of chickens, 3 huge beautiful locally grown Ruby Red sweet potatoes and some wine. Hub and I are cutting back on alcohol during the week, but were happy to enjoy some wine with our friends. We rotisseried the chickens, roasted and mashed the sweet potatoes and also had orzo. Delicious, and the kids ate some of everything...except for Kiddo, who didn't even try the sweet potatoes with brown sugar sprinkled on them. Ah, well.

Last night Hub and I dropped Kiddo off at YiaYia and PaPou's to spend the night, as we were invited to a party in town. What a great party! I. was "re-warming" her house after moving back in recently. She asked guests to bring an appetizer or a beverage. There was so much food! I brought the Minty Lamb meatballs and tzatziki that I had frozen...unfortunately, it did NOT thaw well. The best part was the great conversations with intelligent, engaging people, most of whom we had never met. I. has a charming, small house in an old neighborhood in the city, and the floor plan plus her lovely back porch was very conducive to mingling. She spread the appetizers through several rooms, and the whole party was both easy and elegant.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Grilled stuffed chicken breasts

Sorry it's been so long since I've posted...this getting back to work outside the house thing is really cutting into my cooking and entertaining and blogging time. It's not that I'm not doing any of it, it's just hard to remember to blog about it.

  • 1.5 lb chicken breasts, skinless, boneless (3 halves)
  • 2 oz fresh goat cheese (chevre) - if you can find it with lemon zest flavoring already, that will save you a step
  • zest of one lemon stirred into the cheese, if the goat cheese was not already flavored
  • 6 large leaves of Basil
  • 3 oz Prosciutto
  • 1/2 teas. salt
  • 1/2 teas. fresh ground pepper
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 Tblsp. olive oil
  • 1 oz fresh grated parmesan
  1. Light a grill, spray the grill rack with non-stick spray, put water on to boil for the orzo
  2. Using a meat mallet or a rolling pin, pound the chicken breasts under a sheet of plastic wrap to a fairly even depth.
  3. Use a thin, sharp knife to slice pockets into the sides of the breasts
  4. For each breast, lay out one basil leaf, cover with 1/3 of the cheese, 1 or 2 slices of prosciutto and the 2nd leaf. Stuff the basil "sandwich" into the center of the chicken breast.
  5. Salt and pepper the breasts on each side, and put on the grill
  6. Grill for about 10 minutes a side, or until done. One reason to enclose the filling in the basil leaves is to insulate the inside of the chicken from the prosciutto - if you put the prosciutto on the outside of the "sandwich" it can make it difficult to see if the chicken is done, as the pink color can throw you off.
  7. Cook the orzo according to package directions, toss with olive oil and parmesan.