30 March 2010

Balsamic Chicken with Rosemary and Baked Potato Fries

I was going through my blog and I just realized that I forgot to post up two recipes and they were like a couple months back. Sorry!! *sheepish smile*
Ok for a couple of weeks I was into balsamic vinegar, almost all the dishes I made has to have balsamic vinegar be it as a dressing, sauce or marinade. I had my first taste of this wonderful liquid at Italiannies where they serve freshly baked bread with herbed olive oil and balsamic vinegar, so being the curious me I quickly went to the supermarket and got myself a bottle of balsamic vinegar not knowing what to do with it.

But as always I attended a brief stint at the University of Google and found out that a true balsamic vinegar is sweet and not at all acidic, and a friend who is currently staying in Italy mentioned that balsamic vinegar are usually quite syrupy and very expensive, as they are dark, sweet vinegar aged for many years in wooden barrels in Italy. The longer it is aged, the sweeter, thicker and more expensive it becomes. So the ones available here are those that hasn’t been aged for long but they are still good to use in cooking even though I feel kinda ripped off . Read more about it here

Well now that we have learned more about balsamic vinegar, it’s time to use it in our cooking as shown in the recipe below
Serves 2  
You Need
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cleaned and pat dry 
1-1/2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, minced, or 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
4 shallots, minced
3/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar,
2 tablespoons of brown sugar,
2-3 medium sized Russet potatoes, unpeeled and scrubbed then cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick

How To
1. Combine rosemary, garlic, sugar, balsamic vinegar, oil, pepper and salt in small bowl; mix well.
2. Place chicken in large bowl, drizzle chicken with marinade mixture and rub over.
3.Cover and refrigerate several hours.
4.Preheat oven to 180 degree Celcius. Spray heavy roasting pan or cast iron skillet with nonstick cooking spray or you may drizzle olive oil all over.
5.Layer potatoes around chicken in pan; bake 10 minutes. Turn chicken over, stirring in 3 to 4 tablespoons water if drippings begin to stick to pan.
6.Bake about 10 minutes or until chicken is golden brown and no longer pink in center and the potatoes are soft when you pierce using a fork.
7.Transfer chicken and potatoes to plates. Stir liquid in pan; drizzle over chicken.
8. Serve with salad greens and enjoy!

24 March 2010

It’s been a while

…since I last posted, gosh time sure flies a lot quicker than I thought. Being at home makes one lost sense of time and date, really. Anyway I hardly do much cooking these days because well, it’s not that I have lost interest in cooking and blogging, no never but I hardly find time to do so now that Ashley is much bigger  and she wants all the attention. The moment I leave her alone with her toys, she would start to look for me so now am trying to adjust her routine and my routine as well so that I can go back to cooking and blogging about it.

Ok back to the recipe, this is something inspired by my favourite dish at one of my must-go dining place during the weekend,
Delicious. Each time we go there I am for sure to order this pasta dish, Duck Confit Spaghettini with Sundried Tomatoes and Coriander. Now to be honest I was never a fan of coriander AND tomatoes but when I first tried out this dish, I actually love it a lot, so much that I kept ordering it each time I dine at Delicious. I used to love pasta with loads of sauces but these days I prefer a lighter version , Aglio Olio and this is just perfect; the yummy and tender Duck Confit with a slight tartness of the tomatoes and the fresh taste of coriander comes together in a lightly tossed pasta with olive oil, salt and freshly cracked black pepper.

And even though I would love to go there every week for the dish, we can’t afford to do so on weekly basis, so I tried to come out with my own adaptation of the dish by using seabass instead of duck confit. And to my surprise it’s quite similar with Delicious’ version although I can’t 100% say for sure I’d nailed it :) So here’s the recipe for
Pan Fried Fish Pasta with Sun dried Tomatoes and Coriander

Serves 2
You Need
250g of spaghetti, cooked until al dente
300g sea bass fillet
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes ( you can easily get them from the supermarket, they usually comes in a bottle filled with oil and herbs)
2 to 3 cloves of garlic, minced,
3 tablespoons of olive oil ,
1/2 cup of chopped coriander,
salt and freshly cracked pepper to season 

How To
1. Clean and pat dry the fish with kitchen towel and season with salt and pepper.
2. Heat oil in a skillet or pan. Fry sea bass, turning once halfway through cooking time. Cook until opaque and moist on the inside, 4 to 8 minutes. Set aside.
3. In the same pan saute the garlic and sundried tomatoes briefly and turn off the heat.
4. Toss hot pasta with the tomatoes and coriander. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Top with the pan fried seabass and garnish with coriander. Serve hot.