Grilled Chicken & Vegetables Dinner

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FANFOOD – On The Menu:

GRILLED CHICKEN & VEGETABLES DINNER

Serves 8 -10

 

This menu really shows off your grilling skills and is sure to impress.  Brining the chicken before you grill is key to the success of the menu.  The Rosemary infused ice cubes is a nice touch to the lemonade.

 

Enjoy!

 

On the Menu:

 

Provoleta (grilled provolone cheese)
Grilled Lemon Chicken
Grilled Potatoes with Garlic and Rosemary
Grilled Italian Vegetables with Thyme and Garlic
Blueberry Pie
Rosemary Lemonade

 

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Provoleta

 

Provoleta, or grilled provolone cheese, is a classic Argentine dish. Although the cheese can be marinated or topped with chimichurri, it’s equally delicious plain.

 

INGREDIENTS

oil for the grill
2 slabs of provolone cheese, cut about 1-inch thick
grilled bread, for serving

 

PREPARATION

Turn on a grill and heat to medium warm. Brush the grill with oil.
Place the cheese slabs directly on the grill. Cook until the cheese has grill marks and begins to melt about 2-3 minutes. Flip and cover the grill. Cook for 2-3 minutes more until the other side of the cheese is grilled and the entire slab is warmed through.
Enjoy immediately with grilled or toasted bread, crackers, salami, etc.

 

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Grilled Lemon Chicken

 

The 1 1/2-hour brining time is highly recommended, but not essential; skip it if you’re in a hurry. It’s fine to use chicken parts, such as eight leg/thighs, separated or not, or eight breast/ wings, separated at the joint connecting wing to breast. Grilling whole chickens is also an option, if you remove the backbones and butterfly each before brining. If flare-ups threaten to char the skin of the chicken, move the pieces temporarily to the cooler side of the grill. If you have it, 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary makes a nice addition to the lemon sauce.

 

INGREDIENTS

3/4 cup kosher salt or 1/2 cup table salt
2 whole chickens (about 3 1/2 pounds each), cut into legs, thighs, breasts, and wings; backs reserved for another use
Ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 large cloves garlic, minced and made into paste
1 cup lemon juice from 5 lemons
1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried

 

PREPARATION

Dissolve salt in 2 quarts water in large bowl or two 1-gallon zipper-lock plastic bags. Add chicken parts (seal zipper-lock bags, if using), and refrigerate until fully seasoned, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove chicken from brine, rinse very well, dry thoroughly with paper towels, and season with pepper to taste.

Half an hour before cooking, ignite about 5 quarts hardwood charcoal or charcoal briquettes in a chimney and burn until completely covered with thin coating of light gray ash, 20 to 30 minutes. Dump out coals spread coals over 2/3 of grill bottom, leaving 1/3 with no coals; position grill rack over coals and heat for 10 minutes. Coals should be medium-hot (you can hold your hand 5 inches above the grill surface for 4 seconds).

Heat olive oil and garlic in small saucepan over low heat until garlic starts to sizzle but not color, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat; mix with lemon juice in large, shallow, nonreactive 13-by-9-inch baking dish or similar pan; set aside. (Dry herbs may be added at this point; fresh herbs should not be added until just before coating chicken.)

Place chicken skin side down on rack directly over hot coals; grill, pulling chicken over to empty side in case of flare-ups or if skin starts to char, and turning and moving pieces to ensure even cooking, until chicken is dark golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes for legs and wings and 18 to 20 minutes for thighs and breasts. When chicken pieces are well colored, place them in lemon sauce and roll to coat completely.

Return pieces to side of grill with no coals; heat until lemon sauce flavors meat, about 5 minutes longer, turning each piece and brushing with sauce once or twice more.

Return chicken to pan and roll in lemon sauce once more; serve warm or at room temperature.

 

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Grilled Potatoes with Garlic and Rosemary 

 

This recipe allows you to grill an entree while the hot coals burn down and works best with small potatoes that are about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. If using medium potatoes, 2 to 3 inches in diameter, cut potatoes into quarters. If potatoes are larger than 3 inches in diameter, cut each potato into eighths. Since potatoes are cooked in microwave, use wooden skewers.

 

INGREDIENTS

Vegetable oil for grill rack
4 tablespoons olive oil
9 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 3 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Kosher salt
2 pounds Red Bliss potatoes (about 18), scrubbed, halved, and skewered
Ground black pepper
Large disposable aluminum baking pan (13 by 9-inch)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives

 

PREPARATION

Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal (6 quarts, or about 100 briquettes) and allow to burn until coals are fully ignited and covered with thin layer of ash, about 20 minutes. Empty coals into grill; build two-level fire by arranging two-thirds of coals over half of grill and arranging remaining coals in single layer over other half. Position cooking grate over coals, cover grill, and heat grate until hot, about 5 minutes; scrape grate clean with grill brush. Remove lid and let coals burn until fire on hotter part of grill is medium (you can hold your hand 5 inches above grate for 5 to 6 seconds), about 10 minutes. Dip wad of paper towels in vegetable oil; holding wad with tongs, wipe cooking grate.

Meanwhile, heat olive oil, garlic, rosemary, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in small skillet over medium heat until sizzling, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook until garlic is light blond, about 3 minutes. Pour mixture through fine-mesh strainer into small bowl; press on solids. Measure 1 tablespoon solids and 1 tablespoon oil into large bowl and set aside. Discard remaining solids but reserve remaining oil.

Place skewered potatoes in single layer on large microwave-safe plate and poke each potato several times with skewer. Brush with 1 tablespoon strained oil and season liberally with salt. Microwave on high power until potatoes offer slight resistance when pierced with tip of paring knife, about 8 minutes, turning them halfway through cooking time. Transfer potatoes to baking sheet coated with 1 tablespoon strained oil. Brush with remaining tablespoon strained oil; season with salt and pepper to taste.

Place potatoes on hotter side of grill. Cook, turning once, until grill marks appear, about 4 minutes. Move potatoes to cooler side of grill; cover with disposable pan and continue to cook until paring knife slips in and out of potatoes easily, 5 to 8 minutes longer. Remove potatoes from skewers and transfer to bowl with reserved garlic/oil mixture; add chives and toss until thoroughly coated. Serve immediately.

 

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Grilled Italian Vegetables with Thyme and Garlic

 

These vegetables are fine warm or at room temperature, so grill them before the main course. Drizzle the grilled vegetables with balsamic vinegar if you like.

 

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup olive oil
3 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh thyme , minced, plus several sprigs for garnish
Salt and ground black pepper
2 large red onions, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
3 medium zucchini, ends removed, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch thick strips, peel removed from outer slices
3 small eggplants, ends removed, sliced lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick strips, peel removed from outer slices
1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into large wedges

 

PREPARATION

Light grill fire. Combine oil, garlic, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste in small bowl. Place vegetables on platter; brush both sides with flavored oil.

Place vegetable grid over medium-hot fire and heat several minutes. Place sliced onions on grid. Arrange as many vegetables as possible on open parts of grill. (Grill remaining vegetables in batches as openings are available.)

Grill uncovered, turning onions frequently but other vegetables just once, until everything is marked with dark stripes, 5 to 6 minutes for onions and 8 to 10 minutes for zucchini, eggplant, and pepper.

As each vegetable looks done, transfer to large platter. Garnish platter with thyme sprigs and adjust seasonings. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature. (Vegetables can be covered and kept at room temperature for several hours.)

 

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Blueberry Pie

Makes one 9-inch pie.

 

This recipe was developed using fresh blueberries, but unthawed frozen blueberries (our favorite brands are Wyman’s and Cascadian Farm) will work as well. Cook half the frozen berries over medium-high heat, without mashing, until reduced to 1 1/4 cups, 12 to 15 minutes. Grind the tapioca to a powder in a spice grinder or mini food processor. If using pearl tapioca, reduce the amount to 5 teaspoons. Vodka is essential to the texture of the crust and imparts no flavor; do not substitute.

 

INGREDIENTS

Foolproof Pie Dough:
2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (12 1/2 ounces), plus more for work surface

1 teaspoon table salt
2 tablespoons sugar
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks), cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 cup vegetable shortening, cold, cut into 4 pieces
1/4 cup vodka, cold
1/4 cup cold water

Blueberry Filling:
6 cups fresh blueberries (about 30 ounces)
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and grated on large holes of box grater
2 teaspoons grated zest and 2 teaspoons juice from 1 lemon
3/4 cup sugar (5 1/4 ounces)
2 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca, ground
pinch table salt
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water

 

PREPARATION

For The Pie Dough:

Process 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, and sugar in food processor until combined, about two 1-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogenous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds; dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour. Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.

Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into 2 even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

Remove 1 disk of dough from refrigerator and roll out on generously floured (up to 1/4 cup) work surface to 12-inch circle, about 1/8 inch thick. Roll dough loosely around rolling pin and unroll into pie plate, leaving at least 1-inch overhang on each side. Working around circumference, ease dough into plate by gently lifting edge of dough with one hand while pressing into plate bottom with other hand. Leave dough that overhangs plate in place; refrigerate while preparing filling until dough is firm, about 30 minutes.

For The Filling:

Adjust oven rack to lowest position, place rimmed baking sheet on oven rack, and heat oven to 400 degrees. Place 3 cups berries in medium saucepan and set over medium heat. Using potato masher, mash berries several times to release juices. Continue to cook, stirring frequently and mashing occasionally, until about half of berries have broken down and mixture is thickened and reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 8 minutes. Let cool slightly.
Place grated apple in clean kitchen towel and wring dry. Transfer apple to large bowl. Add cooked berries, remaining 3 cups uncooked berries, lemon zest, juice, sugar, tapioca, and salt; toss to combine. Transfer mixture to dough-lined pie plate and scatter butter pieces over filling.

Roll out second disk of dough on generously floured (up to 1/4 cup) work surface to 11-inch circle, about 1/8 inch thick. Using 1 1/4-inch round biscuit cutter, cut round from center of dough. Cut another 6 rounds from dough, 1 1/2 inches from edge of center hole and equally spaced around center hole. Roll dough loosely around rolling pin and unroll over pie, leaving at least 1/2-inch overhang on each side.

Using kitchen shears, trim bottom layer of overhanging dough, leaving 1/2-inch overhang. Fold dough under itself so that edge of fold is flush with outer rim of pie plate. Flute edges using thumb and forefinger or press with tines of fork to seal. Brush top and edges of pie with egg mixture. If dough is very soft, chill in freezer for 10 minutes.

Place pie on heated baking sheet and bake 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake until juices bubble and crust is deep golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes longer. Transfer pie to wire rack; cool to room temperature, at least 4 hours. Cut into wedges and serve.

 

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Rosemary Lemonade

 

This vigorous, refreshing tall drink that is ideal for spring and summer parties or lazy afternoons.

 

INGREDIENTS

1 1/2 oz Camarena Reposado Tequila
4 oz Organic Lemonade
3 to 4 Organic Rosemary Infused Ice Cubes
Rosemary sprig and lemon wheel for garnish

 

PREPARATION

Place rosemary ice in highball glass.
Add tequila and top with lemonade.
Stir.
Garnish with rosemary sprig and lemon wheel.

Rosemary Infused Ice Cubes:

3 cups water
6 organic rosemary sprigs
Pinch 12 to 15 tips from rosemary sprigs. Set aside.
Bring water to simmer.
Add rosemary sprigs to heated water.
Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat.
Strain into heatproof container. Allow to cool.
After rosemary water has cooled, pour rosemary water into ice tray.
Add rosemary tips to individual ice cubicles. Place in freezer.

 

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