Monthly Archives: June 2012
Who Hoo! I finally created a recipe that I could easily share full of fresh garden goodness, with a lovely splash of white wine for a braised Rosemary and Chicken dinner that made my tongue do back flips! I love cooking, especially when 90% of the meal comes straight out of the backyard! I have been told I should write a cook book, but I am a “throw-it-all-together” kind of cook so I’ve never figured out how to pass on my ideas in a duplicatable way.
About three years ago, my health required switching to a gluten-free, dairy free diet. I am so glad I love cooking as it made the transition so much easier. Now, I don’t even miss the things I used to eat. I do eat some hard cheese now, but I am sticking with the gluten-free. This chicken dinner will fit into almost any allergy diet and is yummy enough for everyone to enjoy.
It is a lovely gourmet treat full of fresh garlic scapes and rosemary from the garden. It’s so simple, it’s really easy to share. I started with a lovely Rosemary infused olive oil in which to saute half a diced white onion and a few freshly snipped garlic heads, aka scapes. I only recently learned that the snipped-off-before-it-blooms part of the garlic head is called a scape, and that it is just as edible as the harvested garlic clove. For more information, here’s a lovely website to peruse and the source of the photo at right: http://chat.allotment.org.uk/index.php?topic=95067.0 I used about 8 scapes for this recipe.
They are good roasted, but for this meal I finely diced them along with the onion and sweated them in the rosemary-infused olive oil for about five minutes. It is pretty simple to make your own oil infusions – it just requires filling a clean jar with fresh rosemary, pouring a good-quality extra-virgin olive oil over it, cover and let it work in the dark for about six weeks. Strain the oil and voila, you have yummy goodness!
However, if you you want a bit more instant access, I recommend using Olive Grand Brand infused oils. They have lots of wonderful gourmet oils and spices. Their website is full of great options! http://olivegrand.com/cmspage.php?page_id=4
Once the onions were translucent and the scapes very fragrant, I added the chicken quarters to brown on both sides. I then reduced the heat and poured a lovely Estate White from Pyrenees Vineyards http://pyreneesvineyard.com/ over the chicken (probably about a cup). I added a few sprigs of freshly-picked rosemary and allowed the chicken to braise until done – 35 to 40 minutes.
The chicken was so tender it fell off of the bone and the white wine reduced into the most delicious sauce – I’m telling you I had no choice but to spoon the leftovers into my mouth directly from the skillet. No wasting a single drop!
I served up the delectable cuisine with fresh garden greens, carrots, cucumbers and snap peas topped with a delicious white-wine vinaigrette recipe from Giada’s website: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/arugula-endive-salad-with-white-wine-vinaigrette-recipe/index.html, poured a glass of the wine to enjoy with the meal and fell into dinner heaven.
If you give this a try, I hope you enjoy the dining experience as much as I did -even better when enjoyed in your lovely garden! Are you hungry yet?
I was so excited to share with you one of my favorite Summer Garden treats – my mint blend sun tea. I spent the entire day getting it ready so I could enjoy a tall iced glass in our shady conversation corner. A great place to be during the hot afternoons.
I usually harvest the herbs early in the am while they are still wet from the morning dew. I use a combination of lemon balm, peppermint, orange mint, spearmint, pineapple sage and a bit of lemon verbena. Very refreshing! The lemon balm provides lots of vitamin C and a mood boost to boot!
To get maximum color and flavor, I de-stem and chop up all of the herb leaves.
I always give them a good wash, but just to be sure any added protein from a hidden garden bug dies quickly and gets sterilized, (I’d much rather ingest protein on my organic plants than cancer causing chemicals to kill the bugs – hmm poison or protein – no brainer!!) I pour boiling water to cover the herbs. I fill the rest of the container with filtered water and set it in the sun to soak up all those warm rays!
Alas, by the end of the day my mental and physical fatigue sets in from my constant struggle with metabolic myopathy and I made a devastating mistake! I decided to strain the tea and pour it into a smaller container to fit more easily into our over full refrigerator. I set the strainer in the sink, upended the fresh-brewed herb tea and watched it disappear down the drain!
Oh crap! Next time, I’ll remember to put a bowl under the strainer to save my hard-earned summer treat.
Here’s wishing you many summer moments with your favorite refresher and the hope that the only disappearing act is does is down your own summer-parched throat!