Saturday, February 16, 2013

Marinated Chicken and Quinoa Salad with Lemon and Mint

"A lot of people like snow.
 I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water."

-Carl Reiner-

I just returned from a two mile walk with my dog. The air temperature was 4º. The windchill was -4º. It was frigging cold out there and I'm sick of it. I'm sick of the chill...sick of the white landscape...sick of the ice underfoot...sick of always reaching for jackets filled with goose down.

I want it to be 74º. I want to be out on my deck, sipping a glass of Conundrum.  I want to be watching the smoke rise from the charcoal as it starts to catch. The coals will be ready to grill in just 15 more minutes, which is ample time to have enough swallows of the golden grapes to drain the glass.

This meal by Jamie Purviance reminds me of summer. It smells like summer. It tastes like summer. So, despite the fact that it's February 16, I'm encouraging all of you to bring a little summer to your kitchen table. It only takes 45 minutes to transport your family to the best season of the year. If your grill is encased in ice, use a grill pan or your broiler. This recipe serves 4 to 6 people.

"It's a smile. It's a kiss. It's a sip of's summertime!"

-Kenny Chesney-

Ingredients for the Marinade
2 tablespoons soy sauce
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
tablespoons fresh lemon juice
tablespoons Dijon mustard
teaspoon ground cumin
garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, each about 6 ounces 

Ingredients for the Quinoa Salad
3 cups chicken broth 
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 
2 teaspoons Kosher salt 
1/2 cups quinoa 
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 
3 scallions (white and light green parts only), thinly sliced 
1 medium garlic clove, minced or pressed 
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves 
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves 
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest 
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce 
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  1. In a medium bowl combine the marinade ingredients. Place the chicken in a large resealable plastic bag and pour in the marinade. Press the air out of the bag and seal tightly. Turn the bag to distribute the marinade, place in a bowl, and refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours.
  2. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the broth, 1 tablespoon oil, and 1 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil. Add the quinoa and lemon juice and stir just until combined. Cover the saucepan, reduce the heat to low, and cook until all of the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Fluff the quinoa with a fork and transfer to a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, the scallions, garlic, parsley, mint, and lemon zest and stir to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning with more salt, hot pepper sauce, and pepper, if desired.
  3. While the quinoa cooks, prepare the grill for direct cooking over medium heat (350° to 450°F). 
  4. Brush the cooking grates clean. Remove the chicken from the bag and discard the marinade. Grill the chicken, smooth side down first, over direct medium heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until the meat is firm to the touch and opaque all the way to the center, 10 to 12 minutes, turning once or twice. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices.
  5. Spread the quinoa on a large serving platter. Arrange the chicken slices in the center of the quinoa and serve immediately.

Wine pairing: Conundrum White Wine

No comments:

Post a Comment