What's Cooking in Carolina?

Mainly creative menus and recipes (usually healthy) and always from scratch with tips for party planning, theme parties, weddings and decorating tips so you can give swank parties or dinners to delight your guests from a part time caterer, owner/operator of a coming soon Entree Vous, but mainly a cook and eater who grows much of her own food and loves to laugh.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Chicken Saltimbocca

I usually don't update my blog more then once a week, mainly because of limited time but also because I don't think I have that much to say. However, I want to do a quick update because I think this is funny. If you read this regularly, you know I received my first Bobby Flay cookbook, Grilling for Life, recently, adding to my collection of several hundred other cookbooks. I have been cooking my way though it, as I do with many new cookbooks when I first get them. Several days ago I tried the chicken stuffed with goat cheese, roasted peppers and olives served with a pablano cilantro sauce.
When I bought the chicken breasts, I bought 4 of them and just used two for the dish, so last night, I used the other two breasts for another of his chicken recipes. This recipe was for chicken stuffed with fontina and proscuitto and served with an orange, sage vinaigrette. We had it with a salad of mixed greens served with orange sections, walnut and blue cheese and orange vinaigrette and mashed potatoes.

I will tell you off the bat, that we cook stuffed chicken a lot I have made chicken cordon blue, chicken saltimbocca and chicken Kiev, among others. We frequently make chicken saltimbocca for parties, for several reasons: they are beautiful, delicious, and easy to make ahead, refrigerate and cook at the last minute and are easy to cook a lot for a party for 50-100 or even double that. I try to convert every recipe into the healthiest, yet tastiest gourmet dish you could want to eat. As far as chicken saltimbocca, I converted it years ago but making the following adjustments to the standard recipe: low fat instead of full fat cheese, egg substitute instead of whole egg for dipping, baking instead of frying. My standard recipe is on the website. You can make 20 or 50, it doesn't matter. Line them on a baking dish, not quite touching and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes or until lightly browned. It may take a bit longer if you have 50 of them.

Well the reason I thought I should write this today, is that after dinner last night, I checked my email. I am on the distribution for lots of food related distributions from BHG, igourmet, to Martha Stewart. Somehow, a new Martha Stewart publication is out called "Quick Cook", the third addition was last evening. The feature recipe was chicken, proscuitto and sage (aka chicken saltimbocca) with buttermilk mashed potatoes among other things. Two of 3 of the same ingredients we had just had for dinner. She had Spinach as a side. Great minds think alike? My favorite way to make mashed potatoes is with fat free buttermilk and Smart Balance, which is what we had with the chicken.

Well, Bobby Flay's recipe was even lighter than mine, by grilling the meat, instead of breading it and then baking, although his is a bit more trouble to make and cook. I made his sauce and keeping with the orange flavor, had oranges in the accompanying salad. It was very good. We split one breast and I didn't take pictures of the dinner, but when I saw Martha had but a recipe out for my dinner only minutes after I had eaten it, I took a picture of the leftover piece this morning, all that we had left from dinner last night as well as the afore mentioned stuffed breast, just to prove I didn't take her lead!

If you haven’t tried it, it is easier to make than you would think. I used to pound out the breasts between wax paper, but have found that sealed zip lock bags are less messy if you aren’t making 50 of them. I'll put the detailed recipe up on our website Swank Recipes in the next day or so as well as how to modify itif you want to grill it. Try one of them and enjoy!


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