tasty tuesday

It's almost 80* out today, which makes me pretty excited. Almost excited enough to ignore the fact that its supposed to be 51* tomorrow... almost (WTF). Happily I have an excuse to leave the office later and take a nice walk. Even more happily, its because I'm getting a massage!! I bought a grou.pon for one back in Feb, and my soreness on Monday prompted me to make the appointment.

Yesterday, was a great and productive day. I headed to the store in the AM to grab some stuff for dinner. I prepped, then signed in to work. Over lunch I put the whole dish together to marinate, washed dishes, and folded/sorted two baskets full of Gwen's clothes (almost a basket's worth is now set aside to be packed away... ::sigh:: my baby is getting so big.). Grabbed a quick bite, then back to work. Phone meeting with a coworker in the afternoon, then it was downstairs at 5:00 to pop the food in the oven and get to work on a side.

And what did I make?

First up was my Uncle Wray's version of Chicken Marbella (recipes at bottom, after break):

I didn't get a great picture... but it was delish, with figs and dates, capers, red wine vinegar. Very yummy.

While that was baking, I made some awesome potato pancakes:

We had mashed potatoes the other night, and they were good, but Gwen wasn't digging them so much. So I decided to try this out... not so mushy, and finger friendly. She was definitely a fan (as were Trav & I!).

I have another yummy meal planned for tonight, so maybe another recipe tomorrow. In the meantime, I have to run to get ready for my massage! One more thing to leave you with though... check out this video. How amazingly gorgeous is this?!:

The Mountain
from Terje Sorgjerd.



Uncle Wray's Chicken Marbella 
(based on the recipe from the Silver Palate cookbook, though he changed it quite a bit -- and I made a few adjustments too)

About 6-8 boneless chicken breast halves, or some breasts and some boneless thighs, skin removed.

A head of garlic (about 8 cloves) minced
1/4 C dried oregano
1 C red wine vinegar
3/4 C olive oil
2 C or more of pitted dried fruit, halved (SP uses prunes, he uses both prunes and figs, I used figs and dates)
1 C green pitted olives  (I didn't have have a full cup, so I used way less)
1/2 C capers
6 bay leaves

Mix all this and pour over chicken in a baking dish. If you have time marinate overnight or a couple hours.

Preheat oven to 350
Before baking sprinkle with 3/4 C brown sugar and 3/4 C white wine (he leaves this out, I did too... but only because I didn't have any on hand; it would be good to add, just to up the amount of yummy liquid)
Bake for an hour, basting frequently with the gravy

May be served hot or room temp. Arrange on a platter and garish with chopped italian parsely or cilantro.

Meegs's Potato Pancakes 
(this is a general recipe, since I eyeballed everything)

Mix cooled mashed potatoes with cheese, sauted onions (or finely chopped chives), salt, pepper, egg, and a dallop of cream (or milk).

Work together until well mixed. Check consistency - you want them to be firm enough to hold together, but not hard. If too firm, add more cream; if too runny, add some bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, or more mashed potatoes.

In a separate large flat container combine flour with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

In a large skillet, heat veggie oil and butter.

Take a large spoonful of mashed potato mixture and gently roll between hands to form a ball, flatten to 1/3" thickness.

Lightly dredge in flour mixture (both sides), then place into skillet. Repeat.

Flip when bottom is browned. When second side is browned, remove to paper towel lined plate. Enjoy!

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~ Meegs