Not to leave you hanging and without good foods to ogle over, my bestie has stepped up to the plate with a recipe for you all. Enjoy!
Hello blogosphere! Bestie A here. As Shanna’s bestie, I am privileged to get to sample all her cooking experiments, and I’m often treated to dinner and vino at her place (and our fav shows on DVR or Netflix). So last week I decided I’d come over and cook S a fancy dinner in her own kitchen. She told me while I was prepping the food that part of cooking for her is blogging about it, so here I am!
On the menu for the evening was chicken stuffed with smoked gouda and pimientos, sauteed summer squash, and basil pearled couscous. Let’s just say I was being optimistic about single-handedly putting this dinner together in someone else’s kitchen, but I eventually got everything accomplished… even if it was after S’s 8:00p eating deadline. Luckily the chicken was yummy enough that she ate it anyway. Success! So to recreate my masterpiece, here is a step-by-step.
1) combine ~1cup shredded smoked gouda, 2 chopped scallions, 1-2 tbs diced pimientos, and 1 tbs paprika in a bowl to combine as the stuffing for the chickies. (see pics below)
2) preheat oven to 400 deg. (This is the important step that was snag number one for me… I selected preheat on S’s oven, but then forgot to press START… doh!)
3) The original recipe said to slice the chickie breasts and then put in the stuffing, but my chickies were pretty think already. So I chose to pound them even thinner, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and then wrap them around the filling and secured with toothpics. This gave the unnecessary consequence of all the chickie breasts looking like human hearts before being cooked… but I digress
4) lightly saute the chickies until they’re golden brown, sprinkle with more paprika, and then pop them in the oven (which should be hot at this point, unless you’re following what I did to a T) for 15 minutes. Our chickies took a little longer, but S likes her poultry well done, and the cheese keeps it all moist, so no biggie.
5) Whilst chickies are cooking, prepare the couscous per instructions on the box, and begin sauteing the sliced squash. We used the same pan for squash that was used for the chicken, and it added a nice flavor. The pearled couscous can be found just about anywhere, and is also called Israeli couscous. I picked a basil flavored box of the pearled couscous, which was super yummy and tasted like pesto… so I think next time I’ll get plain pearled couscous and we’ll make the pesto from scratch. Yum!!
So along the way I made a bit of a mess, but I was able to clean most of it as I went. Even though I know the ins and outs of S’s kitchen pretty well, it was still not as quick or clean as if I’d made it at my house. Let’s just say I’m not a contender that you’ll see on Top Chef anytime soon. But the meal was a hit. Even the boys were raving about the great flavor the smoked gouda added to the chicken. Hurray!
Once dinner was finished, S treated us to a yummy dessert of tofutti ice cream sandwiches topped with chocolate PB2. Delicious! Neither of the hubbies picked up on the PB2 being anything but natural peanut butter, and my hubby didn’t even know the ice cream was tofu-based. Winning.
So tell me blog world… do you get strange-kitchen anxiety when you try to cook somewhere new? And do you love doing unexpected special things for the one’s you love, even though they don’t always turn out perfect?
That’s all for now! Until next time ShannaLikeBanana fans.