Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Mixed Review

So I feel a little bad about this one:
Tonight I made a new recipe (I should stop referring to them as new, from here forward, I will only note an "old" recipe, should one come up) from the Pampered Chef 29 Minutes to Dinner 2 Cookbook.  Usually I am enamored of the simple, quick-cooking, and flavorful recipes.  Tonight's was just...ehhh.  Not great, not inedible.  So the middle ground is good.  Everything I make does not have to be spectacular.  Here's the rundown:
Prosciutto-Wrapped Chicken with Lemon Basil Rice.  I did a couple of modifications: switched the rice for orzo (I dressed it with a little extra-virgin olive oil and parmesan) because we have a lot of rice in our week and thought Drew would be a little burned out by week's end. I also cut the recipe almost in half (I had a teeny tiny chicken breast that probably came from a very sad, very young chicken + two normal sized chicken breasts).  The process of making the recipe is very simple. The instructions easy to follow.  I would throw a little pesto into this situation next time to fill out the flavor profile.  Drew said, "I don't like the tomatoes." 
Here's the problem I have with cooking chicken in the oven:  I like my chicken to brown on the outside so that I know it is done.  I need some feedback, chicken.  When you do it in the oven (or in poaching liquid), it remains, sadly, just white enough to trick you into thinking it is done, but pink on the inside.  My solution: cook it for at least 5 more minutes than it says to.  I have never had a problem when doing this - the chicken is still moist, but it is cooked through.  Not that you needed this tip: but this is what I was thinking whilst dining on said chicken.
So, maybe its me, but I don't think this one will make it around again (funny, because very often even the successes don't make it around again).  Sorry Pampered Chef, you will have the opportunity to redeem yourself Thursday night (I know you can do it!).


Curator D said...

A basil pesto - can't believe i'm saying this - would actually work better in the dish for non-tomato folk. It was good, though. Anything with some piece of the pig on it is usually good. Well, maybe not BBQ Pork Grits.

cookingwithBecky said...

A word from Leah's Pampered Chef...
You may not have fallen in love with this recipe but the principle cooking technique is one to keep handy. Flattening out chicken breast and stuffing them with flavorful spreads and creamy cheeses is classic (My favorite is procutto and gruyere stuffed chicken battered in sour cream and bread crumbs).
As for knowing if the chicken is done... an instant read thermometer is the best way to go. (Pampered Chef has a great one :). If however you really want color on the outside of your chicken try putting the prosciutto inside the wrapped breast with the cheese and basil. You can even bread your chicken to add more texture.
Just a few thoughts from my kitchen to yours.
Keep writing and I will keep reading!