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Monday, 15 August 2011

Simple Summer Supper

I had chicken breasts that I thought I would marinate in garlic, a bit of olive oil, and lemon juice before throwing on the grill for dinner last night, but one problem -- I forgot to marinate them! It was a cloudy night, we were all a bit lazy anyway, and no one felt like firing up the grill (which means DH!).

So, what to do with 4 chicken breasts?!

I saw that there was some thin-sliced prosciutto crudo in the fridge and I had some fresh helda beans (the flat Italian green beans)I needed to really use up -- and I became inspired -- well -- just -- because what I ended up cooking was SO easy, anyone could do it!

Simple Summer Supper

Succulent Prosciutto Chicken Breasts
Green Beans Parmesan
Roasted New Potatoes

Brandy Peaches with Light Vanilla Ice Cream

Ingredients for 4 persons:
4 chicken breasts with skin removed -- cut in half and slightly flattened
Dijon mustard
8 paper-thin slices of prosciutto crudo
300 grams (about 1 1/2 cups) helda beans, trimmed, rinsed and cut into slantwise bitesize pieces
5-6 fresh baby pomodori tomatoes or equivalent amount of any ripe tomatoes
2 Tablespoons parmesan cheese 500 grams (about a pound) new potatoes

4 whole ripe peaches or nectarines
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 Tablespoons cognac, brandy, whiskey, whatever!

Light vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt OR plain yogurt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 C)

Boil new potatoes. Drain and with a fork, slightly 'scratch' each potato, leaving skin on. Spray or LIGHTLY grease a roasting tin with olive oil. Toss potatoes in and roast for about 40 minutes or until bubbling and golden.

During the first 15 minutes the potatoes are in oven, prepare the chicken breasts.

Smear the top of chicken breasts with some Dijon mustard and then wrapped them all in the prosciutto crudo and lay them in a baking dish. Put them, covered with foil in the top shelf of the oven for about 25 minutes. Put the potatoes in the bottom half of oven. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, uncover chicken.

I trimmed and rinsed the beans and cut them slantwise into bitesize pieces. Steam them for about 3 minutes until they are 'al dente' -- DO NOT drain liquid out yet!!! Toss in 5 chopped baby pomodori tomatoes (any ripe tomatoes will do) with a dollop of olive oil and 'stir fry' the beans and tomatoes until the tomatoes are somewhat softened. Sprinkled some grated parmesan cheese over the bean/tomato mixture. Keep the bean/tomato/parmesan mixture warm until chicken and potatoes are just about done. DO NOT drain liquid out!!

About 2 minutes before chicken breasts are done and you have already uncovered them, NOW, drain out any fluid from the bean/tomato/parmesan mixture OVER onto the chicken breasts. This creates a flavorful, nutrient-rich sort of 'sauce' for the chicken!

Plate everything out -- chicken, roasted potatoes (which should now be done, bubbly and golden), and beans -- onto warmed plates.

Lightly salt potatoes, if desired.

For dessert, melt butter in shallow non-stick pan over a medium heat. Add brown sugar and stir gently till dissolved. Lower heat to low. Quickly place whole peaches or nectarines in pan, ladelling each one with the butter/brown sugar while gently tossing them around over a low heat until slightly softened. Add brandy at last minute or two. Plate onto dessert plates and add dollop of ice cream, frozen yogurt, or plain yogurt


PS -- As I am STILL watching my carbohydrate intake, I left off the potatoes and brandied peach and had a fresh peach, instead. Thus, this meal was entirely flexible for someone on a carb-limited diet!

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