Showing posts with label entree. Show all posts
Showing posts with label entree. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Chicken Julia - #recipe @LeslieBudewitz

LESLIE BUDEWITZ: A few years ago, Mr. Right and I spent a month in my France for my mumbledy-mumbledy birthday. For me, it was a dream come true. For him, it started out as something he agreed to because it was my dream—and ended up as possibly his favorite trip ever, for a man who’s traveled much of the world.

It was the people (seriously!), the art, the history, the landscape, and the food. The food, the food, the food. When we returned home, we set about transforming ourselves from decent home cooks to good ones. That Christmas, he bought me an armful of Julia Child cookbooks and videos, while I bought him a raft of kitchen accessories.

One of our go-to recipes we simply call “Chicken Julia,” based on a recipe in Julia’s Kitchen Wisdom: Essential Techniques and Recipes from a Lifetime of Cooking. The sauce is incredibly simple, and so rich and flavorful--the perfect illustration of the importance of a simple technique like deglazing the pan and using the juices as the base for the sauce.

I'm honestly not sure I'd ever used fresh tarragon before we first made this recipe; now, I keep a pot growing on the back porch during good weather and do my best to nurture it inside through the Montana winter. In fact, I've kept the current pot going over two seasons--last fall, it had gotten quite leggy so I cut it back and dried the leaves, then forgot it in the laundry room. A couple of weeks later, I discovered that it had sent up new green shoots. Looks like it will keep going this year, too, making my 99 cent annual quite the bargain. (That's it in the terra cotta pot.)

Even if you can't grow your own tarragon, do try to find some fresh stuff at least once when you make this recipe. I can pretty much guarantee it will become a staple in your house, too!

Chicken Julia

2 boneless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ cup dry white wine or French vermouth
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1/4 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon

Place the chicken breasts in plastic wrap and flatten with a mallet or the flat of a large chef’s knife to about ½ inch thick. Season with salt and pepper. Melt butter in a large saute pan, add the oil, and heat. Saute the chicken breasts, about one minute a side, until thy are springy to the touch; be sure they are done but not overcooked—Julia says the juices should run clear or yellow with no pink. Remove the chicken; the sauce won’t take long to cook, but keeping them in a warm oven is a nice touch.



Deglaze the pan with the wine or vermouth. Add the shallots, stock, and vermouth, and cook two to three minutes, stirring, to make a sauce. Plate the chicken and divide the sauce, pouring it over the chicken.


Serves two. Bon appetit!  

From the cover of TREBLE AT THE JAM FEST, Food Lovers' Village Mystery #4 (Midnight Ink, June 8, 2017):  

Erin Murphy, manager of Murphy’s Mercantile (aka the Merc), is tuning up for Jewel Bay’s annual Jazz Festival. Between keeping the Merc’s shelves stocked with Montana’s tastiest local fare and hosting the festival’s kick-off concert, Erin has her hands full.

Discord erupts when jazz guitarist Gerry Martin is found dead on the rocks above the Jewel River. The one-time international sensation had fallen out of sync with festival organizers, students, and performers. Was his death an accident?or did someone even the score?

Despite the warning signs to not get involved, Erin investigates. And when the killer attacks, she orchestrates her efforts into one last crescendo, hoping to avoid a deadly finale.


Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. The past president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat, an avid bird-watcher.

Swing by my website and join the mailing list for my seasonal newsletter. And join me on Facebook where I announce lots of giveaways from my cozy writer friends.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Why City Chicken has No Chicken: A New Look at a Century-Old Recipe by Cleo Coyle

Behold the "mock drumstick" of our (baked not fried)
City Chicken, smothered in a delicious pan gravy.
A century-old recipe bringing comfort food joy...


One hundred years ago, when you couldn't afford real chicken, "City Chicken" was a tasty alternative, a way to enjoy mock fried chicken drumsticks using meat scraps (pork, beef, veal) from the butcher. 

Different regions have their own take on this dish. Some deep fry the mock drumsticks, others have no breading. My 
husband's mother prepared it, "Pittsburgh style"breaded, sautéed, baked, and served with pan gravy, which is the very recipe I'm sharing with you today. 

Our longtime followers may recall my sharing this recipe a few years ago. I thought it would be fun to share again for our new followers and readers. AND since my husband (and partner in crime writing) has been craving it lately, I thought it was about time I aided and abetted his desire to...

Eat with joy!

~ Cleo



Cleo Coyle has a partner in 
crime writing—her husband. 
Learn about their books
by clicking here and here.
Cleo Coyle's
City Chicken


So why is it called City Chicken?

During the Depression, when this mock chicken dish really took off, fatty trimmings and meat scraps of pork, beef, and veal were less expensive than chicken, especially in urban areas that were far from poultry farms. In other words, city-dwellers were the ones making it because chicken was too expensive to eat.

And how does it taste?

Incredibly good. Marc and I grew up just outside of Pittsburgh, where the dish has been popular for years. Wednesdays were City Chicken night at my husband's house, where his mom served her hearty mock drumsticks with string beans and mashed potatoes—to soak up all that good pan gravy. 

For years, many of the grocery stores in the Pittsburgh area sold "City Chicken" packs of pork pieces with skewers included. Wikipedia's entry on City Chicken even features a picture of one of these Pittsburgh packs. (See Wiki photo at left.)

Here in New York, where we've lived for decades, we've never seen "City Chicken" packs—ironic since it's the biggest city in the country! But, hey, that's okay. Marc and I don’t need those packs. And neither do you. Just look for packages of boneless pork and/or veal pieces (usually marked for stew, see my pictures below), follow our recipe, and you’re all set to make your very own Pittsburgh-style comfort food.






To download a PDF copy 
of this retro recipe that
you can print, save, 
or share, click here.



Cleo Coyle's
City Chicken Recipe



Makes six servings
INGREDIENTS:

- 6 six-inch wooden skewers (in a pinch, simply cut down longer skewers)

- 3 pounds of meat cubes (we use):
    1-½ pounds boneless pork pieces (or "stew meat") +
    1-½ pounds veal pieces (or "stew meat")


- 1 cup all-purpose flour

- 1 cup seasoned bread 
crumbs (we use Italian seasoned)

- 2 large eggs (beaten with fork)

- 1 tablespoon milk (or water) to make the "egg wash" for breading

- 1 medium white or yellow onion, chopped 

- 1/4 cup vegetable oil 

- 2 Tablespoons butter 

- 2/3 cup chicken or veg stock

- Salt and pepper to taste

- 1 tablespoon (or so) Wondra flour or cornstarch


DIRECTIONS:

Note: If you bought "stew meat" packages as shown above, you should be ready to go. If you can't find stew meat, purchase pork loin chops and/or veal steaks and cut them into small pieces ( about 1- to 1-1/2 inches in size). 

Step 1: Prepare the Meat - Arrange the meat pieces on each of the six skewers. If using more than one type, alternate them (pork, veal, pork, veal, etc...) Fit the pieces together tightly to create a mock chicken drumstick. Dredge each of the mock drumsticks in flour, then in the egg wash (2 eggs beaten with 1 T. milk or water), and finally coat generously with the seasoned bread crumbs.




Step 2: Brown the meat – Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. While oven is heating, place the vegetable oil in a large oven-proof skillet over medium high heat. When this shallow oil is hot enough to ripple, add 1 tablespoon of butter and allow it to melt. Sauté the mock drumsticks about five minutes in the hot oil, turning often, until the outsides are golden brown. Remove the mock drumsticks from the pan and set them aside on a holding plate. Turn the heat to low.

Step 3: Sauté the onions – Add the chopped onion to the hot oil, along with about 1 tablespoon butter. Cook and stir over the low heat until the onions are brown, about five minutes. Now return the mock drumsticks to the pan (along with any drippings that may have accumulated on the holding plate). Cook them only for another minute or two.


Step 4: Bake in the oven – Add ½ cup chicken or vegetable stock to the skillet, cover with a lid, and bake in the preheated oven for about 50 minutes, or until the meat is tender. 




Step 5: Make the gravy - The onions and stock create a nice gravy as the meat cooks. While you can spoon this thin gravy over the mock drumsticks as is, we prefer to thicken it. To do this, you'll need to remove all of the mock drumsticks from the pan while leaving the liquid in there...



Over low heat, whisk the Wondra flour (or cornstarch) into the liquid. If you like, you can stir a bit of butter into the gravy for richness, as well, although it's not a necessity. Simmer for a minute or two, whisking in more flour or cornstarch until the gravy thickens to your liking. Then plate the mock drumsticks, spoon the gravy over them, as shown, and...





Eat (and read) with joy!

~ Cleo Coyle

New York Times bestselling author of  
The Coffeehouse Mysteries


Friend me on facebook here. * Follow me on twitter here
Learn about my books here


* * *


Our Newest Mystery is
a Bestselling Hardcover!



Coffee. It can get a girl killed.

Amazon * B&N




A "Most Wanted" Mystery Guild Selection
A Baker & Taylor Trends Pick
Three "Best of Year" Reviewer Lists


Dead to the Last Drop 
is a culinary mystery with 
more than 25 delicious recipes!

See the free illustrated 
Recipe Guide by clicking here.



*  *  *



The Coffeehouse Mysteries are bestselling
works of amateur sleuth fiction set in a landmark
Greenwich Village coffeehouse, and each of the
15 titles includes the added bonus of recipes. 


GET A FREE TITLE CHECKLIST
OF BOOKS IN ORDER

(with mini plot summaries)


* * * 


Marc and I also write
The Haunted Bookshop Mysteries

Get a free title checklist, 
with mini plot summaries, 



Or learn more about the 
books and meet Jack Shepard, 
our PI ghost by clicking here.



Wednesday, February 3, 2016

FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE release week + book #giveaway from author @AveryAames


It's out! It's here!  The 7th Cheese Shop Mystery: 
FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE


It's release week for Sheila and me!  
I hope you've ordered, pre-ordered, or hope to get to a bookstore this week! 
Good reading for all.  Congrats, Sheila!


To celebrate, I have a give away below! 

FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE is the 7th in the series. What's it about?


The whey to a woman’s heart is murder...

It’s time for the annual Cheese Festival in Providence, Ohio, and Charlotte Bessette’s Fromagerie is ripe with homemade specialties. Meanwhile, her friend Erin is prepping her dairy farm and inn for cheese makers, marketers, journalists, and one surprise guest from the past—Lara Berry, pretentious cheese whiz, pompous bestselling author, and pungent critic whose extra sharp tongue can crumble a reputation. 
Since any love for Lara curdled long ago, Charlotte isn’t surprised when the foodie is smothered to death in her room at Erin’s inn. Accusations start flying, but the one sticking to Erin strikes Charlotte as a crock. Now, to clear her friend’s name, Charlotte has to sift through Lara’s ex-lovers, former business partners, and unforgiving enemies to find a killer before Lara’s past casts a gamey pall on the festival’s future.
***
And, now, here's a delicious recipe that I created for For Cheddar Or Worse. You know there are recipes in all the books, right? And did you know that there has been a quiche recipe in every book since The Long Quiche Goodbye?
When I am in recipe-making mode for a book, which means I wrack my brain trying to figure out new and fun recipes to include, I try to imagine tasty items, but sometimes I have to force the issue. Now Charlotte, of course, is always thinking quiche since she offers those in the shop on a daily basis. So I, channeling Charlotte, decided upon quiche, too. I love when Charlotte and I are in synch. 
I love the texture of quiche. I love the combo of flavors. 
For this experiment...I had a ton of carrots in the refrigerator, just sitting there staring at me one day, and I knew that I needed to do someone with them. I'd recently made a carrot cake. I didn't need another.
Carrot quiche, I thought. Hmm. What would pair well with carrots? This time I scoured my cupboards and found pine nuts and thought, yes! Nice texture with toasty flavor. Perfect!


 Pine Nut Carrot Quiche

(serves 6)


1 frozen 9-inch ready-made pie shell (regular or gluten-free)
1 1/2 Tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 cups shredded carrots
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1 tsp. dried sage or 1 Tbs. fresh sage, chopped
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 cup Cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup milk
2 large eggs



Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Remove pie shell from the freezer and thaw for ten minutes. Prick the bottom with a fork and bake for 7 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove crust from the oven to cool.
 [Of course you can make your own pie shell if you wish...this was just the easy way!]

Chop the carrots. I used my Cuisinart to shred really small. Heat olive oil in a sauté pan on medium-high. Reduce heat to medium. Add garlic powder (or garlic cloves, chopped), carrots, salt, white pepper, and sage. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 1 minute. Stir in pine nuts.


In a small bowl, mix Cheddar and Parmesan cheeses. In another bowl, whisk milk and eggs together.

Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the cheese mixture on the cooled piecrust.  Top with half of the carrot-pine nut mixture. 
Add 1/2 cup cheese mixture and then remaining carrot mixture. Top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese mixture.








Don’t worry – I didn’t forget the milk mixture. First, place the pie pan on a sheet pan. 


Carefully pour in the milk mixture.  Bake for 40 minutes. Check. If necessary, cook another 5-10 minutes, until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool slightly before cutting.




***

Now I have to knuckle down for recipes to include in my next Cookbook Nook Mystery, GRILLING THE SUBJECT.  Barbecue is the theme. I think I'm going to have fun! Don't you love the festive cover? 


By the way, do you get my newsletter? Are you part of the fan club? There are fun puzzles, special pictures, tidbits, and giveaways. One of my fans won this prize just a few days ago. Five more won books and mugs! 

Sign up today so you don't miss out in the future. I won't inundate you with mail. Just announcements about when special things are happening, like the release of FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE, release parties, giveaways, and more!  Good luck.



TODAY'S GIVEAWAY!

Leave your name and email so I can contact you if you WIN, and tell me if you like to attend festivals and such!  I'll be giving away a SAVOR THE MYSTERY MUG. Winner will be picked Friday, the 5th.








Savor the mystery and say cheese!
Daryl Wood Gerber aka Avery Aames
Tasty ~ Zesty ~ Dangerous!


Friend Daryl and Avery on Facebook
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Plus check out our website with lots of trailers, excerpts, plus a fan club with puzzles and giveaways!


FUDGING THE BOOKS, the 4th Cookbook Nook Mystery, is HERE!  Click to order.




New in February
FOR CHEDDAR OR WORSE
Click to order.