I love it when we cook together, but I appreciate Thursdays because while I’m at school teaching a cute 6th grade girl, Dustin is at home making us dinner. When I get home and park my bike behind our apartment building, I smell something delicious coming from the floor above me. I climb our two flights of stairs, come in and ask, “What are you working on? ” To which he replies, “I’m not sure.”
This flavorful chicken dish made use of our flourishing basil plant and some white wine that was in the fridge, and it was really good! The accompaniment is my favorite spinach recipe by Jamie Oliver from Jamie’s Dinners, which was last year’s Christmas present from my brother. To complete the meal, we had some crusty wheat bread that we had picked up from our favorite bakery Kokoro down the street.
Dustin’s Garlic-Basil Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken cutlets (or 1 chicken breast half, cut in 4 pieces – follow directions below for pounding thin)
salt & pepper
2-3 TBS. olive oil
1 clove of garlic, chopped
2 second pour of chicken broth
a big splash of white wine
lemon juice to taste
fresh, torn basil leaves (as much as you like), divided
- Place the chicken between 2 sheets of plastic wrap on the counter. Pound them with something heavy that’s lying around until they’re about a 1/4 inch thick.
- Season them on both sides with salt and pepper, and coat with flour, tapping off excess.
- Heat olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, begin cooking the chicken. A few minutes on each side should do it. Set aside and cover with foil to keep warm.
- To the same pan, add the chopped garlic, and sauté for a few minutes. Then add the chicken broth and white wine. Reduce for about 2-3 minutes. Then whisk in about a TBS of flour (a little at a time) until the sauce thickens a little. Add a squeeze of lemon juice to taste and throw in half of the torn basil leaves.
- Plate the chicken (2 cutlets per plate) and top with the sauce, as well as some more torn basil. Serves 2.
Jamie’s Perfect Braised Spinach
- Cook the spinach in a pan with a little olive oil, butter, a grating of nutmeg and a tiny squeeze of lemon (I also add a small handful of raisins, which may offend some people, but I saw it on the food network once and I love the taste of the combination.
- Stir, and cover to let it steam for a bit. If there is any excess moisture when the spinach is cooked, just tilt the pan so it runs to the other side and pour it away. Let the spinach sit for a minute and then serve.