Tagged: lemon

Milani Chicken

cropdoneMuch like many newlyweds of my generation, when I first got married, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen trying to find my bearings and pretend I knew what the hell I was doing.   My mom and cousin were on speed dial for traditional Lebanese food assistance and just basic technique direction. There were so many opinions in my family about how and what to cook I found myself struggling to develop an approach for my tastes and style.  One time in particular I remember having a craving for the chicken kabobs my cousins served in their restaurant.  I didn’t have their recipe but I really wanted something a little more crunchy and garlicky.  Milani Chicken was born.   Even though I didn’t stray very far from home and tradition, my first original concoction has stood the test of time.  It’s a favorite of my family and friends and in permanent rotation in our household.  It also fueled my confidence as a young cook and opened the door for more experimenting in the kitchen.

My son Oliver loves the brown, crunchy bits of garlic the best  He comes behind me and scapes every last morsel from the pan.  If you don’t let the garlic get really toasted and brown then this recipe will just be another chicken dish.  Let it brown and then let it brown a little more.  Just like the pictures.  xoxox

4 boneless breast of chicken
One head of garlic mashed with a mortar and pastle
Juice of one lemon
1/2 C olive oil
2 heaping tablespoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Mash the garlic with a mortar and pestle

motar

2. Cut the chicken in cubes. Add all ingredients and mix.

mix

 

3. Spill into a hot non-stick pan and sautéed to coat each piece.

startcook

4.Reduce the heat and allow the chicken and garlic pieces to brown.

5.Stirring occasionally.

Not ready yet. Almost!!
Not ready yet. Almost!!

This dish is done when the garlic is brown and crunchy and each piece of chicken is a caramel color at least on one side.

Now it's done!!
Now it’s done!!

Great on the paleo diet wrapped in lettuce.

For the non-paleo diet See below

Wrap in some pita and topped with cucumber dressing, lettuce, onion and tomatoes and life is good!!  Need a video?  click here

Cucumber Dressing

2 C shredded cucumbers
2 C Sour Cream
2 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 salt

Shred cucumbers and lightly squeeze out excess water. Add all ingredients mix and enjoy!  Sahtain!!

DSCF1419

 

Authentic Traditional Baba Ghanoush

Just in time to include a little Mediterranean flare to your Thanksgiving table.  Baba Ghanoush is not only refreshing and healthy it’s a delicious way to add some new  flavors to the “same ole” Thanksgiving palette.  Perfect as an appetizer or snuggled up nicely beside some juicy turkey and gravy.  These fall flavors seem to match up perfectly.

When I was a little girl this dish was not one of my favorites.   I couldn’t understand how anyone would want to eat an “egg” plant.   When I realized it had nothing to do with eggs I opened my mind a little and now it’s one of my favorite vegetables. Eggplant is much more user friendly than most people give it credit for.  I especially love its smoky flavor in this dish.

The ingredients are almost identical to hummus except, of course, the most important element… eggplant.  Baba Ganoush is actually less calorie dense than hummus. A cup of eggplant only has 35 calories while a cup of chickpeas has 285.   Whaaat????   So you can indulge a little more.   The traditional topping of pomegranates add a lovely unexpected freshness to the warm smoky eggplant and not to mention the added nutritional impact.  So worth the effort of having to peel the pomegranates.

2 Cups eggplant

1 Cup tahini

½ Cup lemon juice

3 Cloves garlic grated with a micro plan or smashed with a mortar and pestle

1 ½ Teaspoon salt

Generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil

Pomegranate seeds optional

Aubergine

Start with three nice sized eggplants.  Let me just say color makes a difference here.

The dark purple aubergines are the ones you want to use for this recipe.  I enjoy all species but the lighter ones don’t hold up to this type of roasting.

 

 

Score each vegetable with a fork three or four times and place them on a hot grill.  Let them roast for at least 45 minutes.

 

 

Once good and charred on both sides remove the eggplant and scoop out the creamy pale innards

Add the eggplant, garlic and tahini together and blend with a hand blender or electric blender.  Add lemon, salt and blend.

Plate it by smoothing it out on a nice Milani Platter. 🙂

Give it a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a generous topping of Pomegranate seeds and that’s it!  So easy.  Right?  Let me know what you think!

Sahtain!!