RECIPE: Progressive Dinner For Feb 22

gardenladFebruary 19, 2007

Here are this week's assignments:

Appetizer: Wizard

1st Course: Dances

Soup: Danain

Salad: VaGirl

Entree: GardenLad

Side 1: Em

Side 2: Annie

Dessert: Woody

Coffe: Cindy

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I thinking we're about due for some poultry. So for this week's entree we'll have:

Hazelnut-Crusted Chicken Breasts with Garlic Lemon Mustard

7 tbls butter
6 skinless/boneless chicken breasts, cut in half
5-6 garlic cloves, minced
Zest of 2 lemons, minced
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 tsp Tabasco
1/3 cup Dijon mustard
1 1/4 cups finely chopped hazelnuts
2/3 cup fine bread crumbs
1 tsp dried tarragon
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
12 thin slices lemon

Preheat oven to 375. Lightly butter a shalow baking pan large enough to hold chickenin a single layer without pieces touching.

In a saucepan, combine remaining butter, garlic, and lemon zest. Heat until butter melts and aromas of lemon and garlic are released. Set aside.

In a flat bowl blend juice, Tabasco and mustard. In another bowl combine nuts, crumbs, herbs, salt and white pepper.

Dip each chicken piece into mustard mix, then coat evenly with nut mixture. Place in prepared pan. Pour butter mixture evenly over chicken.

Bake for 20 minutes. Turn. Place lemon slice on each piece. Spoon pan juices over top, and bake until broned and firm to touch, about 30 minutes more.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2007 at 3:39PM
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1 medium onion; minced
2 tablespoons butter
2 pounds frozen peas
4 cups chicken (or vegetable) broth
kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
1/2 cup torn fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup heavy cream; whipped

Melt butter in a heavy, 4-quart saucepan; add onion and a sprinkle of salt and sauté until tender but not brown. Stir in peas and 2 1/2 cups of the broth; bring to a simmer and cook peas for eight minutes. Remove from heat, stir in remaining 1 1/2 cups broth and mint. Puree soup in 4 batches in blender with the top vented to allow steam to escape, until very smooth. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste. Press through a strainer for smooth, velvety soup. Serve hot topped with whipped cream or at room temperature in the summer time.


    Bookmark   February 19, 2007 at 9:16PM
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I enjoy this salad and it offers lovely color and flavor during this time of year. Roasting the beets enhances the sweetness of this salad. You may see frisée labeled as curly endive at the market.

Frisée Salad with Roasted Beets & Orange Vinaigrette
Serves 6-8

4 medium-size red or golden beets, tops sliced off, rinsed
2 shallots, minced
2 Tbs. sherry vinegar
Juice and grated zest of 1 orange
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
10 oz. frisée (tough, bright-green outer leaves discarded), washed, dried, and torn
2-1/2 oz. (1/2 cup) walnuts, toasted and lightly chopped

Heat the oven to 400°F.
Place beets in a small baking dish with 1 cup water.
Cover with foil and roast until the beets are tender, 40 to 60 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the minced shallot, vinegar, orange juice, and orange zest.
Whisk in the olive oil in a thin stream; season with salt and pepper.
When the beets are cool, peel them and cut into 1/2-inch dice.
Toss with 1 to 2 Tbs. of the vinaigrette.
Toss the frisée with some of the remaining vinaigrette (there may be a little vinaigrette left over).
Divide the frisée evenly among salad plates, sprinkle with the beets and toasted walnuts, and serve.

Fine Cooking #48, pp. 76-81

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 9:49AM
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Mmmmm, the chicken sounds just wonderful to me I can't wait to make it.

Here's my dessert for this week.


2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup dark rum
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
4 firm, rpie bananas, peeled and cut diagonally into 1/4 inch thick slices
1 pint of your favorite ice cream, suggestions are vanilla or rum raisin or a coconut or pineapple sorbet

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in honey, rum and cinnamon. Bring to a boil, add bananas and toss to coat. Remove from heat and serve over ice cream or sorbet.

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 12:53PM
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Can you believe, I bought the ingredients to test an idea I had. It was a vegetable dish that involved grilled endive topped with roasted beets and goat cheese, then sprinkled with an orange shallot vinagrette! Vagardengirl, great minds must think alike ;).

So I had to change gears. And came up with this:

Belgian Endive in Fondue

*1 head endive, about the length of your hand, cut into quarters, washed well and dried with paper towels
*Olive oil
*Salt and Pepper
*4 thin slices ham
*1 tbsp butter
*1 clove garlic, minced
*1 clove from a shallot, minced
*1 tbsp flour
*1 cup canned evaporated milk
*1 cup shredded gouda cheese

Brush the endive with some oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill in a hot grill pan, turning to get marks on all sides. Remove to a piece of foil and pinch closed to seal so the endive quarters can steam a bit.

In a small sauce pan, melt the butter. Saute the garlic and shallot until fragrant and softer, but do not brown. Add the flour and whisk for a moment to combine. Slowly add the evaporated milk, whisking the whole time. If it looks lumpy, just keep whisking. It will come together. Bring to a bubble and let cook for a moment (stirring constantly so it doesn't scorch). Remove from heat. Stir in the cheese, and add black pepper to taste.

Open the foil packet and wrap an endive quarter in a ham slice. Place in a greased individual casserole dish or ramekin (I use brulee dishes I got with my brulee gun). I had to cut mine in half to fit.

Divide the sauce over the rolls in the dishes.

Bake at 350 degrees until sauce is bubbly, endive is tender, and the top is browned in spots. Mine took about 20 minutes. Let rest for 5-10 minutes.

Serve with toast points. Eat the endive pieces, then spread the cheese sauce on the toast.

I can never decide if this is too salty from the ham. I think next time I will finally decide to leave the ham out, and increase the amount of endive in each dish and call it a side. The cheese is very forgiving, you can use whatever you like in a cheese sauce. I want to try this as a larger casserole and add some ricotta cheese and see what happens. Feel free to use regular milk (even skim milk!) for the sauce. I have a zillion cans of evaporated milk to use up.

The serving seems small (1/4 of a belgian endive?!?!) but this is very rich and filling. Too much and you would be too full for the rest of the dinner, and it might be cloying.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   February 20, 2007 at 5:43PM
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Seems like an appetizer with seafood would be good with this dinner. Here's one that is easy and best done ahead. I always make extra when I do tortilla rollup type appetizers, I always hope to have extra for snacks the next day. You can do these up to 5 days ahead.

Shrimp Roll Ups

1 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup cocktail sauce*

1 small package frozen salad shrimp chopped fine

1/4 cup shredded swiss cheese

1/4 cup peeled seeded finely chopped cucumber

2-4 tablespoons finely chopped green onions

4 8-inch flour tortillas

*Cocktail sauce, this can be purchased or homemade. I usually just mix ketchup, ground horseradish and chopped celery in the FP, pulsing several times.

Mix the cream cheese and cocktail sauce. Blend thoroughly.

Add shrimp, cheese, cucumber and green onion, and mix well

Spread about 1/2 cup of mixture on each tortilla and roll up.

Wrap individually in plastic and place in refrigerator over night.

Slice into 1/2 inch slices.

Serve with additional cocktail sauce.


    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 9:02AM
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Well, after the bananas and rum, I thought a little square of macadamia/white chocolate might be nice with the coffee.

Macadamia Nut Blondies
Source: Adapted from Tori Ritchie (Food Network)

2 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted butter, at room temp
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
2 whole eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup chopped macadamia nuts
opt: 1 cup white chocolate chips

Stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a large bowl or in a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy, then beat in the eggs and vanilla. Gently stir in the flour mixture, then the macadamia nuts and optional white chocolate chips. Mix until well blended and pour into greased 9x13 baking dish. Bake at 350 until a toothpick inserted into the center of the dish comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let cool in pan, cut into squares.


    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 3:01PM
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Gees, you guys are really good!!

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 8:24PM
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Well, it looks like the only thing left as a side is a starch. Hmmm. Rice? Potatoes? Pasta?

Actually, I like sweet potatoes better than white potatoes, and this is one of my favorites, from Lori at the Cooking Forum:

Sweet Potato Wedges with Dipping Sauce

2 lb. 4 oz. sweet potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 3-4" wedges - Toss with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil. Sprinkle with chili powder & salt to taste.
Place on baking sheet in single layer. Bake at 375 F., 40 - 50 minutes, until tender and lightly browned on edges.

Dipping Sauce

Mix 1-1/4 cups sour cream, 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce, 2 green onions (finely chopped), and 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Cover & refrigerate. Serve hot wedges with dipping sauce.


    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 10:04PM
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Jeez Louise, Bamasue - of course we're good, darn good, LOL!

Heck, if nothing else, we are definitely enjoying ourselves! (Well, I am, anyway!)

If you're interested in joining in, you'd be very welcome, as would anyone else.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 10:35PM
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Cindy, the blondies sound great!

Yes Bamasue, you should join in. I'm enjoying this too.

Annie, I love roasted sweet potatoes too. Paul doesn't so I always make half the baking sheet with Ukon Golds.


    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 9:50AM
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Hi there --

Ok, this isn't a T&T by me, but comes highly recommended to me by someone...

Stir-fried Carrots With Cumin and Lime

2.5 Tbs canola
2 tsp black mustard seeds
1 inch piece ginver, peeled and coarsely grated
1/2 fresh hot green chile, minced
3 whole dried small red chiles
1 tsp cumin seeds
1.5 pounds carrots, peeled and grated on the large holes of a grater
3/4 tsp salt
Juice of 1/2 lime

Combine oil and mustard seeds, in a large wok or frying pan over medium-high heat. Cover (the mustard seeds pop and splatter) until you hear the mustard seeds crackle, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the ginger, fresh and dried chiles, cumin, and cook uncovered, stirring, until the ginger crisps a little, about 1.5 minutes. Add the carrots and cook, stirring, until warmed through, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the salt and the lime juice... Serve hot or cold.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 10:05AM
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Dances, I had to smile when I read your post! How funny that the idea was "shared." I wanted to let you know I made yur Endive recipe and it got a "major yum" vote here at our house! Thanks for sharing the recipe!


    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 9:39AM
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