Saturday, August 20, 2011

Grilled Chicken Breast with Sun-Dried & Fresh Tomatoes

A double does of tomatoes lets you enjoy not only the sweet summery flavor of fresh tomatoes but the deeper, richer tones supplied by the sun-dried variety.


½ lb small red and yellow cherry tomatoes, halved

2 TBSP chopped drained sun-dried tomatoes

2 tsp. capers, rained

½ tsp finely chopped garlic

1 TBSP sherry vinegar

2 tsp lightly chopped fresh thyme

3 TBSP plus 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 large boneless, skinless chicken breast, tenders removed and reserved for another sue. Breast butterflied.

In a small bowl, combine the cheery tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, capers, garlic, vinegar, 1 tsp of chopped thyme, 3 TBSP olive oil, ¼ tsp kosher salt and few grinds of pepper. Set aside, stirring occasionally to let the flavors combine.

Heat a gas grill to high. Put the chicken in a shallow nonreactive pan or plate. Rub it over with kosher salt, a few grinds of pepper, and the remaining 1 tsp thyme. Drizzle ½ tsp olive oil over each side of each piece of chicken and rub all over.

Lay the butterflied breast on the hot grill grates and cook, covered, until they have grill marks, 1 ½ minutes. With tongs, rotate the breast 90 degrees and continue grilling until grill marks form, another 1 ½ minutes. Flip the breast and cook the second side in the same way but for a little less time, grilling for 1 minute in one direction and 1 minute in another, until cooked through.

Transfer the breast immediately to two warm serving plates. Sitr the tomato miture and spoon equal amounts over each piece of chicken. Garnish with a sprig of thyme, if you like.

NOTES: I doubled but could have tripled the sun dried tomatoes. It adds a lot of taste to the dish. I am not a caper fan, so I reduced the capers to half; however, next time I will leave them out of the dish. It is up to you on how you want to make it. It is also great with couscous.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Scalloped Tomatoes

This recipe is so good. The better the tomato, the better the dish. I found it in the Barefooted Contessa's newest cookbook, The Way It Is. It is a great dish to add to the summer recipes.

Good olive oil
2 cups (1/2 inch diced) bread from a French boule, crusts removed
16 plum tomatoes, cut into 1/2 inch dices (about 2 1/2 pounds)
1 TBSP minced garlic (3 cloves)
2 TBSP sugar
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black peppers
1/2 cup julienned basil leaves, lightly packed
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat 3 TBSP of olive oil in a large (12 inch) saute pan over medium heat. Add the bread cubes and stir to coat with the oil. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the cubes are evenly browned.

Meanwhile, combine the tomatoes, garlic, sugar, salt and pepper in a large bowl. When the bread cubes are done, add the tomato mixture and continue to cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes. Off the heat, stir in the basil.

Pour the tomato mixture into a shallow (6 to 8 cups) baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with the Parmesan cheese and drizzle with 2 TBSP of olive oil. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the top is browned and the tomatoes are bubbly. Serve hot or warm.

NOTES: I minimized the sugar to half the amount. I think it depends on your tomatoes. Some tomatoes are sweeter than others. I did not use plum tomatoes, but I had some wonderful Beefsteak tomatoes that I used. It was really, really tasty.