This week from Diane Brush:
Grilled Chicken with Pesto and Marinated Tomatoes
Recipe from Fine Cooking, August 2002 issue
2/3 cup homemade or store-bought basil pesto
3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
4 ripe plum tomatoes, cored
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil; more for brushing
1-1/2 tsp. red-wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 generous tsp. Dijon mustard
2 Tbs. chopped fresh basil (or a mix of cilantro, basil, and flat-leaf parsley)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat a gas grill to high. Butterfly the chicken breasts by making a horizontal cut through the center of the thickest long side of the breast. Cut almost but not entirely through each breast. Open the breasts like a book. Cover with plastic wrap and pound to flatten slightly to an even thickness. Combine the pesto with 2 Tbs. of the lemon juice and rub over the chicken in a nonreactive dish.
Cut each tomato in half. Gently remove the seeds with your fingers, coarsely chop the flesh, and put it in a bowl. In a small bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, garlic, mustard, basil, remaining 1 Tbs. lemon juice, 1 tsp. salt, and a generous amount of pepper. Pour this over the tomatoes and combine well.
Oil the grill so the chicken doesn’t stick. Remove the chicken from the pesto, shaking to remove excess marinade, and sprinkle lightly with salt. Grill, turning once, until golden on both sides and cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes total. Transfer the chicken to a platter and serve hot or at room temperature. At the table, spoon the tomatoes over the chicken.
Yield: 4 servings
Tzatziki Potato Salad
Recipe from Smitten Kitchen
1 3/4 cups Greek yogurt
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon white wine or champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
1 medium garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 hothouse or English cucumber or ~1 pound of standard cucumbers, unpeeled but quartered lengthwise, seeds removed
In a medium pot, cover your potatoes with cold water and bring them to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat to medium-high and let potatoes simmer until tender enough that they can be pierced easily with a skewer or slim knife. If your potatoes are small, this should take about 20 minutes or so. Drain potatoes and let them cool completely.
Meanwhile, in the bottom of a large bowl, stir together yogurt, sour cream, lemon juice, vinegar, dill, garlic, salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper.
Grate the cucumber on a box grater or in the food processor (using the grating blade) and remove some of the excess by pressing it in a mesh sieve with a spoon or wringing it in a square of cheesecloth or a lint-free dishtowel. Add to yogurt mixture.
Once potatoes are cool, cut them into chunks. Add to sauce and stir to coat. Adjust seasonings to taste. Either eat immediately or keep in the refrigerator for up to three days.
Yield: ~10 servings