Coq au Vin

Ingredients

10 oz shallots
3 tablespoons flour
6 large skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 oz chopped bacon or pancetta
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/4 cup brandy
3 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1 bottle dry fruity red wine, 750 ml
8 oz small button mushrooms
1 tablespoon butter, softened (optional)
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
creamy mashed potatoes or tagliatelle, to serve

Method

  1. Cut the shallots into even-sized pieces, leaving the small ones whole and cutting the others in half or quarters.
  2. Put 2 tablespoons flour in a shallow dish and season it with salt and pepper. Dip the chicken breasts in the flour and coat both sides.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large lidded skillet or deep casserole, add the chicken breasts, and fry for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until lightly browned—you may have to do this in 2 batches.
  4. Remove the chicken from the pan, discard the oil, and wipe the pan with paper towels.
  5. Return the pan to the heat and pour in the remaining oil. Add the chopped bacon or pancetta and the shallots and fry until lightly browned. Stir in the garlic, then return the chicken to the pan.
  6. Put the brandy in a small saucepan and heat it until almost boiling. Set it alight with a long kitchen match and carefully pour it over the chicken. Let the flames die down, then add the thyme and bay leaf and pour in enough wine to just cover the chicken. Bring back to simmering point, then reduce the heat, half cover the pan, and simmer very gently for 45 minutes. (If you’re making this dish ahead of time, take the pan off the heat after 30 minutes, let cool, and refrigerate overnight.) Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes.
  7. Remove the chicken from the pan, set aside, and keep it warm.
  8. Using a slotted spoon, scoop the shallots, bacon pieces or pancetta cubes, and mushrooms out of the pan and keep them warm. Increase the heat under the pan and let the sauce simmer until it has reduced by half. If the sauce needs thickening, mash 1 tablespoon soft butter with 1 tablespoon flour to give a smooth paste, then add it bit by bit to the sauce, beating well after each addition, until the sauce is smooth and glossy.
  9. Return the shallots, pancetta, and mushrooms to the pan. Check the seasoning and add salt and pepper, to taste. Cut each chicken breast into 4 slices and arrange them on warm serving plates. Spoon a generous amount of sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with parsley. Serve with creamy mashed potatoes or tagliatelle.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: Cooking with Wine


Today’s Comic

Crispy Harissa Fish with Lemon Couscous

Ingredients

1 tablespoon harissa
2 (175 g) firm white fish fillets, skin on
1 tablespoon olive oil
store-bought tzatziki and lemon wedges, to serve

Lemon Couscous

2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup (200 g) instant couscous
sea salt and cracked black pepper
1-1/2 cups hot chicken stock
100 g baby spinach leaves

Method

  1. To make the lemon couscous, place the rind and juice, couscous, salt and pepper in bowl and mix to combine. Pour over the stock and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside until all the stock has been absorbed and stir through the spinach.
  2. To cook the fish, spread the harissa over the flesh side of the fish.
  3. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add the oil to the pan and the fish, skin-side down, and cook for 4-5 minutes or until the skin is crisp. Turn and cook for 1 minute or until fish is just cooked.
  4. Divide the couscous and fish between serving plates and serve with tzatziki and lemon wedges

Makes 2 servings.

Source: Fast, Fresh, Simple


Today’s Comic

Eggplant Lasagne

Ingredients

3 medium eggplants, sliced
5 tbsp olive oil
2 large onions, finely chopped
2 (14 oz) cans chopped tomatoes
l tsp dried mixed herbs
6 sheets no pre-cook lasagne
salt and black pepper

Cheese Sauce

2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp plain flour
1-1/4 cups milk
1/2 tsp mustard
8 tbsp grated mature Cheddar
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Method

  1. Layer the sliced eggplant in a colander, sprinkling lightly with salt between each layer. Leave to stand for 1 hour, then rinse and pat dry.
  2. Heat 4 tbsp oil in a large pan, fry the eggplant and drain on kitchen paper. Add the remaining oil to the pan, cook the onions for 5 minutes, then stir in the tomatoes, herbs, garlic and seasoning. Bring to the boil and simmer, covered for 30 minutes.
  3. Make the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a pan, stir in the flour and cook gently for 1 minute, stirring. Gradually stir in the milk. Bring to the boil, stirring, and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the mustard, cheeses and seasoning.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Arrange half the eggplant in the base of an ovenproof dish, spoon over half the tomato sauce. Arrange three sheets of lasagne on top. Repeat with a second layer.
  5. Spoon over the cheese sauce, cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid for the last 10 minutes to brown the crust.
  6. Serve hot with a mixed salad.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Vegetarian Classics


Today’s Comic

Saltimbocca Roman Style

Ingredients

8 small veal scallops (about 14 lb)
salt
pepper
8 slices prosciutto ( both the lean and the fat)
flour
1/4 cup butter or margarine
8 sage leaves
dry white wine
Boiled baby potatoes tossed in butter and parsley to garnish

Method

  1. Trim the veal scallops, and pound, making them all roughly the same size.
  2. Season veal with salt and pepper, and put on each 1 sage leaf. Cover with 1 slice prosciutto and fasten with a toothpick . Dip them lightly in flour.
  3. Melt half the butter or margarine in a pan, add the meat slices side by side. Increase the heat, and brown on both sides. Continue cooking for a few minutes, until golden and cooked through. Put on a warm serving platter and remove the toothpicks.
  4. Add the wine to the cooking juices, and let it reduce on high heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, until it has almost evaporated.
  5. Add the remaining butter or margarine, and pour over the saltimbocca.
  6. Serve immediately, garnished with baby potatoes tossed in butter and sprinkled with chopped parsley.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The Cook’s Book


Today’s Comic

Salmon and Red Quinoa on Asparagus with Lime Cilantro Sauce

Ingredients

1/2 cup red quinoa
1 cup water
1/2 cup light sour cream
3 Tbsp light mayonnaise
1 tsp grated lime zest
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp butter
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 Tbsp minced fresh cilantro
pinch salt
4 (4 oz) fresh wild salmon fillets (about 1-inch thick)
1 lb asparagus

Method

  1. Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off but keep the covered saucepan on the burner for an additional 6 minutes. Remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Set aside.
  2. Combine the sour cream, mayonnaise, lime zest, 1 Tbsp of the lime juice, ginger, cilantro and salt in a small bowl, mixing well. Set aside.
  3. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the fillets on a foil-lined baking sheet and brush with oil. Place in the oven and bake uncovered on the center rack for about 11 to 14 minutes (the salmon will be pink and flake easily with a fork).
  4. While the salmon is cooking, prepare the asparagus. Trim off the tough portion of each spear by grasping it and bending it near the bottom third. The asparagus will snap where it begins to get tough. Place the asparagus in a large pot of boiling water and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes, until tender but crisp.
  5. Toss the asparagus in the butter and the remaining 1 Tbsp of lime juice. Season with additional salt to taste.
  6. Arrange the asparagus on individual serving plates. Place a portion of the quinoa over the asparagus and top with a piece of salmon.
  7. Drizzle the lime dressing over the salmon and serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Quinoa 365


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