Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Grilled Chicken Saag, and Sauteed Calamari

Welcome to Part 2 of Welcome Back Jesse: Dinner - this one's a doozy. I decided to grill the chicken rather than brown it in the saucepan as recipes called for to make it a little healthier. That worked fine, but as you can see below, this meal requires many pots, dishes, and steps. It came out good on the end, spicy but not quite like Indian from a restaurant because I was lacking in spices such as coriander, cloves, garam masala, which I didn't feel like going out to get for this. But the best part - this dish is chuck full of spinach, so it's good for you!

1 1/2 cup rice
3 cups water
pinch of salt

1 1/2 lb chicken breast, sliced into 4 pieces
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp tumeric
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp curry
salt and pepper
non-stick cooking spray

2 bunches spinach, washed thoroughly and chopped
1/4 cup water

four pitas
olive oil
salt and pepper

olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, minced
1 inch piece ginger, minced
1/2 green chili pepper, diced
1 tomato, diced
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp curry
salt and pepper

Step 1: Combine water, rice, and salt in a pot, bring to boil, and then lightly simmer until all water is absorbed, approximately 50 minutes.

Step 2: Rub chicken with spices. Grill on high five minutes, flip over and grill another five minutes, then grill on low for another five minutes till done. Remove from heat. Don't forget to turn off the grill!

Step 3: Put spinach in a pot with 1/4 cup water. Cover, bring to a boil, and remove from heat. When cool, grind in blender and set aside.

Step 4: Brush pita bread on both sides lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and lightly toast at 400 degrees for 5 minutes until warm and slightly toasty.

Step 5: Sautee garlic, onion, and ginger until lightly browned. Add tomato and other spices and simmer for 10 minutes. Add spinach puree and simmer about 5 minutes. Add chicken and simmer another 10 mintes until sauce has thickened. Remove from heat. Serve over brown rice with pita bread.

Sauteed Calamari

Also, the next night, Jesse sauteed up some calamari that was yummy. It was already washed by the fisherman - I think he just chopped it up and sauteed it on low with olive oil and minced garlic for about 45 minutes until it was tender. And tender it was - I like it much better this way than breaded and chewy like restaurants usually serve it.

Speaking of garlic, we went to the garlic festival in Saugerties today and it was somewhat disappointing. First of all, it was overwhelming - so crowded and so many vendors I didn't know where to start where to go and it was way too easy to keep losing my friends. Half the time was spent losing and meeting back up. Anyway, there were many stands selling what looked and tasted like high-quality garlic as well as garlic spreads and sauces etc. But the actual food to eat there was almost like any county fair - fried dough, tacos, and taco and pork all in pieces dripping with gross oil or whatever stand after stand so that was disappointing. For all the hype, I thought there would be intelligent dishes. Oh well, I'm so tired from being in the car so long I can't even think.

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