Thursday, February 24, 2011

Oh, Joy

I’ve been cooking. I see each attempt like simple high school science experiment. Follow the instructions laid out in the text and see if the desired results can be attained. My text, the classic Joy of Cooking.

The 1997 Joy of Cooking
A simple start, “BONELESS, SKINLESS CHICKEN BREASTS BAKED IN FOIL WITH SUN-DRIED TOMATOES AND OLIVES.”  (Page 592 of the edition I have) The text states:

“This method of cooking, called in French en papillote, entails baking boneless, skinless chicken breasts in sealed foil packages. The foil traps the juices, resulting in moist meat.”

You start by preheating the oven to 450. Ingredients amounts vary depending on taste and number of people you might be cooking for, but all you need is the chicken, Kalamata olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and some basil. Dice up the olives, tomatoes, and basil and mix in a bowl with some of the oil from the sun-dried tomatoes.

“Cut 12-inch squares of foil. Fold each square in half to make a crease at the center, Unfold the foil and lightly oil the shiny side. Lay each salt and peppered breast on the shiny side of the foil just to one side of the crease. Spoon the tomato mixture over each breast.

Loosely fold the foil over the chicken, then crimp the edges of the packet to seal tightly.

Bake for 20-30 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for five. To avoid being burned by steam, cut a slit in the packets before opening them.”  It smells amazing starting about fifteen minutes in.

I serve mine with a healthy slice of feta cheese and sometimes a plain green salad, a glass of white wine, it is delicious, and with some minor changes can make equally simple and amazing variations.

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