Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Braised Balsamic Chicken

I made a Mediterranean-style dinner last night. I had chicken defrosting and knew I wanted to use some packaged polenta that I had on hand, so I went looking for a recipe that would complement it. The sherbet & sorbet recipes follow, also. Here you go, with a few personal adaptations, of course!

Braised Balsamic Chicken

6 Chicken Breasts, boneless & skinless
NOTE: I substituted chicken tenderloins and used about 10-12
Garlic salt (I like fresh ground garlic sea salt)
coarsley ground pepper
2 T. olive oil
1 sweet onion, sliced thinly
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar--buy the best you can afford--Costco's is pretty good
1-small can diced tomatoes
1 t. dried basil
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. dried rosemary
1/2 t. dried thyme

Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt & pepper. Heat olive oil in a skillet, brown the onion and the chicken.
Mix tomatoes, vinegar and seasonings in a bowl, then pour over the chicken and onions. Simmer, uncovered, until the chicken is done (145 degrees) and the tomato sauce is thickened.


I cheat and buy the stuff at TJs in the tube. Slice it off and brown in a skillet brushed with olive oil. Place on a cookie sheet and top with grated asiago cheese. Broil to melt the cheese. Serve with extra sauce from the chicken.

Three Bean Salad

1 can dark kidney beans
1 can garbanzo beans
1 can green beans
3 T. seasoned rice vinegar
1 T. Extra virgin olive oil or other light oil
1 t. sugar
1/2 t. seasoned salt or garlic salt
1/8 t. pepper
1/8 t. Mrs. Dash seasoning

Drain and rinse all the beans, then place in bowl. Whisk together the remaining ingredients until the sugar is well disolved and add to the bean mixture. Refrigerate until about 20 minutes before serving.

Raspberry Sherbet

1-12 oz bag frozen raspberries, at least halfway defrosted
1 c. non-fat half and half
sugar to taste (about 1/2 cup or more)

Blend all ingredients together in a food processor for about 30 seconds. Add mixture to ice cream maker and follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Mango Sorbet

1 c. sugar
3/4 c. water
1 lb. bag frozen mangoes

Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium high heat. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved and the syrup is clear. Remove from heat and cool in refrigerator.
Allow mangoes to thaw while syrup is cooling, about 30-45 minutes.

Combine the syrup and the mangoes in a food processor and process until smooth (about 30 seconds) If mixture is cold, process in ice cream maker immediately. If it isn't cold, refrigerate, then process in ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions.

You may serve both of these immediately if you are pressed for time, but I like to put the finished product in a container with a lid and freeze for at least a couple of hours before serving.

There you have it, folks--my mediterranean inspired dinner! I served it with a wine from a local winery--2005 Capstone Unicus. If you don't happen to have that one in your wine cellar, try a Washington or Coastal California Zinfandel or any "big" red wine. I also served the Asiago bread from Safeway bakery, warmed in the oven while the chicken cooked. Enjoy!!

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