Posts tagged ‘herbs’

February 9, 2011

Lemon Herb Dutch Oven Chicken

I have been wanting to do this for a while now… but I needed a little inspiration. Thanks so much Julie @ The Little Kitchen !

With the temptation of a delicious  rotisserie chicken at a steal of a price for just $6.99 and ready to eat, it’s so hard to turn down. And the stores are smart, they always have these sitting on a warmer, right near the checkout. Normally, I’d just grab one and go, but not this time; this time I sacked up and bought a little raw 4.5 lb fryer chicken, some veggies and herbs, and set out on a culinary adventure. Not only does it give me the satisfaction of knowing I cooked a tasty chicken from scratch, but also it gives me the liberty to incorporate different flavors with much less sodium! Score!

Here’s how the fun process works:

First, grate some lemon peel.

Combine lemon peel with chopped fresh rosemary and thyme, and some salt and pepper and a pad of  butter.

Rub the herb butter on chicken breast, underneath the skin. This will  make it super moist and extra tasty!

Coarsely chop carrots, celery, and onion.

Make the Spice Rub and apply to the skin of the chicken….really rub it on there good,  you won’t regret it.

Then stuff the cavity of the chicken with a few handfuls of veggies, along with a quartered lemon and a sprig of rosemary.

I bet right now you are getting so excited that you are almost ready to get your little guy cooking. I know that I was so giddy… but first, you should infuse some olive oil with a few smashed cloves of garlic and rosemary.

Put the chicken in, breast-side down to brown for 5 minutes. Add the remainder of the veggies around the chicken.

Flip the chicken over, breast-side up, and let other side brown for another 5 minutes. I threw some more thyme on top too, just for fun.

Put the lid on the b-e-a-utiful dutch oven, and put in the oven.

After about 30 minutes, pull it out and pour in the wine along with placing  the quartered potatoes on top. Put the top back on and pop back in the oven for another half n hour or so.

Check done-ness with instant thermometer (our new kitchen tool, compliments of Lauren’s dad, Thanks Mike!)

Take chicken out of the pot, and set on cutting board (with grooves, so juice doesn’t flow all over the place), cover with foil for 20 minutes.

Transfer the potatoes to a bowl.

Add in parmesan cheese, chopped rosemary and thyme, salt and pepper, a pad of butter, and some milk. Get smashing, until preferred texture.

Strain out the juices from the solids, applying a little pressure on the solids to help the process, and discard them. Then let the juices settle and spoon out the fat, which is that whole top layer. Cook the remaining juice with lemon juice and serve this “sauce” with the chicken & smashed potatoes!

Meanwhile, chop up some onions, green bell pepper, and trim some asparagus. Drizzle with olive oil and a little balsamic vinegar, and sprinkle with garlic salt. Let bake in the oven for about 10 minutes.

Plate the chicken, smashed potatoes, and crispy balsamic veggies… and you have an amazing 100% home-cooked 3 dish dinner!!

Ingredients:

1 whole roasting chicken (41/2 to 5 pounds), giblets removed and discarded,

salt & pepper

1-2 Tbsp olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

4 celery stalks, chopped

4 carrots, peeled and chopped

7 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

3 sprigs fresh rosemary (one to stuff in the chicken, and one to finely chop)

2 Tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped

1 Tbsp butter

2 Tbsp lemon peel, grated

1 tsp lemon juice

1/2 cup dry white wine

4 red potatoes, cleaned and quartered

Spice rub: (1 tsp cayenne pepper, 2 tsp paprika, 1 tsp onion powder, 2 tsp salt, 1 tsp pepper) This combination was inspired from The Little Kitchen blog

Chicken Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and arrange racks to make room for dutch oven.

2. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season outside with spice rub (see directions above).

3. Mix butter, rosemary, thyme, and lemon peel and distribute evenly underneath the skin, atop the chicken breast. Stuff the chicken cavity with the carrots, celery, onions, 4 cloves smashed garlic, sprig of rosemary, 2-3 wedges of lemon.

4. In a large Dutch oven over high, heat the oil and add small sprig of rosemary (only the leaves) along with 3 smashed cloves of garlic to infuse the oil. Add the chicken, breast-side down. Scatter the remaining onion, celery, and carrots around chicken.

5. Cook until the breast is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken breast-side up and cook another  6 to 8 minutes. Add in the wine.

6. Cover with lid and transfer the pot to the oven and cook until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees when inserted in thickest part of breast and 175 degrees in thickest part of thigh, about 60 to 80 minutes. Halfway through, throw the quartered red potatoes on top, close the lid and return to oven.

7. Once it’s finished cooking, first take out the quartered potatoes and put aside, in a medium bowl. Then, transfer the chicken to carving board, tent with foil and let rest for 20 minutes.

8. Now the fat has to be separated from the juice. While the chicken is resting, strain chicken juices from the pot through fine-mesh strainer into a glass measuring bowl, pressing on solids to extract liquid. Discard the solids (carrots/celery/onion). You don’t want to eat the veggies since they are doused in fat, although I suppose they are tasty.

9. Allow the liquid to settle, about 3 minutes, then pour back into dutch oven and set over low heat.

10. Carve the chicken, adding any accumulated juices to the saucepan (if at all possible). Stir lemon juice into the saucepan to create some really delicious “au jus” type sauce, and serve with chicken.

Herb-Parmesan Smashed Potatoes preparation:

1. Smash potatoes with fork, or a masher if you have it.

2. Add a pad of butter, 2 Tbsp of grated parmesan cheese, 1/4-1/2 cup milk, 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme, and 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary, salt and pepper to taste. Mix until desired consistency (it’s best to start with less liquid, and then adding more as needed). Also it would be a great idea to add in a few tablespoons of the chicken “au jus”.

3. Enjoy!

From the Little Yellow Kitchen

-Chrissy

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January 13, 2011

Herbalicious Goat Cheese Pizza

Oh how the week flew by! And somehow it ended up being a busy one… Considering our upcoming 3-day-MLK weekend trip to San Francisco, we wanted to keep dinner fairly simple. Pizza it is. No, we didn’t call up Dominos (Yah, right!) and order that sorry excuse for what they call pizza; but instead, we grabbed some pizza dough and hunk of herb goat cheese from TJ’s and created our own. There are so many different pizza concoctions to make, so be creative with your topping selection. Since we had been craving goat cheese for a while we thought that caramelized onions, garlic, fresh herbs, tomatoes and spinach would be great complements to such a creamy and poignant cheese.

Shopping list:

  • 4 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 Shallot
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh Rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme
  • Pizza Dough (ours is the herb kind from TJ’s)
  • Olive Oil
  • S & P (Salt and Peppeh’)
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 1 Tomato
  • Hunk of Herb-rolled Goat cheese (~8-10 oz.)
  • 1/4 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Here are the directions to our Herbalicious Goat Cheese Pizza:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and make sure that the pizza dough (which you can make from scratch if you wanted to) is room temp.

2. Now would be an excellent time to use your pizza stone, but if you don’t have one (neither do we) then a cookie sheet works fine. Oil it up and place the dough on the sheet, carefully stretching it to fit the sheet or desired thickness.

3. Pop I’n the oven for 5 minutes to get the crust cookin’! (we discovered this works best so that the center isn’t doughy and undercooked) 4. Let the crust cool for a few minutes before adding toppings.

Here is how were prepared our toppings and sauce:

-Start with caramelizing the onions, since that will take the most prep/cook time. Coat the bottom of the saute pan with Olive Oil and when its hot, throw in the sliced onions. Toss in some salt and, stirring occasionally, let the onions cook down and turn a nice amber color. The whole process should take about 30 minutes, but it depends on the amount of onions. FYI- this link a great resource for perfect onion caramelization.

 

Toppings:

– Chop a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme; set aside. Slice the hunk of herb goat cheese (about a 1/4 inch thick). Slice a tomato. Grab a handful of washed fresh spinach leaves. Set out some grated Parmesan cheese.

Garlic-Herb Olive Oil Sauce:

– Once onions are finished caramelizing, set aside. Add a few tablespoons of Olive Oil to the same pan and when heated add a chopped shallot and let cook for a few minutes. Add in 4 cloves minced garlic and chopped fresh herbs, a dash of salt and pepper and let cook for about a minute. There is your sauce!

Building yo’ pi z za!

Take the semi-cooked crust and pour on Garlic Herb Olive Oil sauce. Be absolutely sure you get all the great shallot/herb/garlic chunks of pure goodness in there too! No man left behind (in the pan)! Spread evenly.

Garlic-y sauce goodness

 

 

Then, sprinkle the cooled caramelized onions evenly. Place down goat cheese medallions, followed by tomato slices, and finally sprinkle some grated Parmesan cheese atop this masterpiece!

 

 

Slide in the oven and cook until perfection (usually around 10-12 minutes)! If you are a spinach fanatic like we are, then pile a hefty handful of spinach on top and pop back in the oven to let these leafy greens get cozy with the pizza for another 2 minutes. Now you can indulge!

From the Little Yellow Kitchen

–Chrissy