Wednesday, December 9, 2009

120. Braised Cauliflower with Garlic and Tomatoes

Date Cooked: November 30, 2009
Page: 154
Rating: B+

I was hesitant about this recipe. For starters it contains tomatoes. And secondly it didn’t involve a cheese sauce which is almost always how we eat cauliflower… I guess that is a bit shameful. Well that is why I selected this recipe to try. A little outside the regular range of cooking without being too over the top (the other version involves anchovies, I’m not there yet in my culinary adventures).

I started by butchering a head of cauliflower into many smaller pieces. These got sauteed in oil until lightly browned and then I added some red pepper flakes, garlic and a bit more oil. When these ingredients hit the sauce pan my eyes started to water something fierce. I think the red pepper flakes were vaporizing into the air as they made contact with the hot pan. When I added the diced tomatoes the results were not much better as bits of red sauce splattered everywhere. I very quickly stirred the cauliflower and then covered it. The cauliflower cooked for another 5 minutes before I removed it from the heat and stirred in some fresh basil.

That was all it took to prepare this dish.

Rating: B+. This was a really easy way to prepare cauliflower. I actually enjoyed this dish and my wife didn’t complain at all which means I think she liked it, but won’t admit that she is getting used to tomatoes… The kids on the other hand didn’t touch it.

Friday, December 4, 2009

119. Broiled Chicken Breasts

Date Cooked: November 30, 2009
Page: 327
Rating: B+

I had already done broiled chicken thighs and those turned out nice. This wasn’t much different except I decided to use a rub. As mentioned in the previous post, a rub was added between the skin and meat and then a mixture of oil and lemon juice was added just before finishing.

For those that care. The chicken was broiled on the bottom oven rack for about 7 minutes a side, starting skin side down, then a minute on the top rack to crisp the skin. My top rack left very little clearance between the chicken and the element and I had to watch it like a hawk lest my chicken go up in flames.

Rating: B+. The chicken turned out nicely done, maybe a little overcooked but brining allows for a little more leniency with cooking time. The chicken maintained its flavor and juiciness. The rub was a little too heavy on the rosemary and detracted a bit from the garlic and lemon flavors which were much more subtle.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

118. Garlic, Lemon, and Rosemary Rub

Date Cooked: November 30, 2009
Page: 327
Rating: B-

This was a component for some simple broiled chicken that we decided to have. Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture prior to using this rub on the chicken so the picture is of the chicken. As with most rubs this one was rather simple to put together. I started with some cloves of garlic mauled by a garlic press. Into this I added some lemon zest and some freshly minced rosemary from my rosemary plant which is still growing strong on my front porch, even though we don’t water it and the temperatures have started dropping below freezing at night. I might need to bring it in next to my basil plant soon. Lastly some ground black pepper was added. This rub was spread under the skin of the chicken breasts before cooking. When the chicken was almost done cooking a mixture of oil and lemon juice was added.

Rating: B-. It’s hard to rate something like this since it is not meant to be eaten on its own. But I was not a fan of the taste it imparted to the chicken. The rosemary was definitely dominant. I would imagine this could be better with less rosemary and more garlic.
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