Friday, January 12, 2007

Chicken, Tequila, and an Open Flame

Ina seems so detail oriented, doesn't she? So don't you think she might mention that putting her Tequila Lime Chicken on a hot grill is roughly the equivalent of signalling an orbiting spacecraft with a flare? I've never marinated meat in alcohol before, and frankly, I wasn't prepared for the shooting flames. It all worked out okay, as this was a really tasty dish. It's just that I liked having eyebrows!

Nonetheless, this was really good. This recipe calls for the chicken to marinate overnight in a mixture of tequila, fresh lime juice, fresh orange juice, garlic, jalapenos, and chile powder. The next time I make this, I think I'll add some pineapple juice, as well as some chopped cilantro. This recipe also calls for boneless chicken breasts with skin on. Our local supermarket didn't have any, so I had my first experience of deboning chicken last night. It worked out quite well; I wasted only a little bit of meat on a couple of the portions--and I didn't cut myself. Life is good!

Leaving the skin on definitely allowed the chicken to stay moister on the grill, and the flavors of the marinade permeated every bit of the meat. This meat would also be great wrapped in warm tortillas with a sweep of guacamole and pico de gallo.

My choice tonight, though, was traditional rather than ethnic. I served this alongside fluffy baked potatoes and Parmesan Roasted Asparagus. In Barefoot Contessa: Family Style, this asparagus recipe can be found in the appetizer section, along with the explanation that Italians would typically eat their vegetables as part of an antipasti course. I've categorized it as a vegetable, because it's highly unlikely that I would serve it as an appetizer. At any rate, I slipped the pan of asparagus in the oven about half an hour after starting the potatoes. They both cooked happily at 400 degrees, and allowed me to time my dinner to have everything ready at once. Like the other vegetable "recipes" in the book, this one is really a bit of a no-brainer. However, I had never tried adding Parmesan cheese to roasted asparagus. It was good, though--really good. Even the non-veggie and non-cheese eater in our house declared that he could eat vegetables like this. Roasting has been my preferred veggie cooking method for quite some time, and it looks like the addition of Parmesan will join the ranks of tried-and-true methods.

Tomorrow, I will try to post some recipes mentioned earlier in the week, as well as links to some of my other favorite places (and blogs) on the web.

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