This is another offering from the (newly upgraded) kitchen of Morganthony and the new Mrs. Ribeiro herself.
Ever the modern woman, Morg is not only “workin’ that 9 to 5 and stayin’ cute” à la J. Holiday,* but she is also bringing home the bacon and frying it up in a pan. Or the chicken, depending upon the night.
Morg found this recipe on Williams Sonoma, but, as any good chef does, she has tweaked it to her liking. The recipe below uses extra balsamic and higher heat to absorb it, and that’s what gets your chicken kickin’.
1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast halves or thighs
4 tbsp olive oil
1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and sliced
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
6 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup minced fresh basil
1 tbsp minced fresh thyme
S&P to taste
- Season the chicken generously with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil.
- Add the chicken and cook, turning once, until golden brown, about 7 minutes total. Transfer to a plate.
- In the same pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the bell peppers and onion and sauté until softened, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
- Add the vinegar, half of the basil and half of the thyme and stir, scraping up the browned bits from the pan bottom. Return the chicken and any juices from the plate to the pan, spooning the peppers over the chicken.
- Cook until the chicken is opaque throughout, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the remaining basil and thyme, and season with salt and pepper.
- Divide among 4 plates and serve immediately. Serves 4.
*I realize this reference is beyond random, but that song is catchy as hell. Also, Hunter Mills once convinced me to leave a wedding reception to stand outside his car and listen to this song in order to prove I would like it as much as Apologize by promising he would eat his jacket if I didn’t. Unfortunately, I did, but I still respect that move.
It’s spicy up in here, y’all.
I feel like everywhere I look these days, there is a different colored bell pepper staring up at me, like a little edible Oompa Loompa. (Sometimes I like to imagine veggies are little people.. but then that brings up the distasteful idea of murdering them just so I can have salsa or whatever, and that’s a little more unseemly. Except for those Veggie Tales effers. Those creepy little things can burn.)
Anywho, there’s nothing better to do with these ripe little suckers than bathe them in a little olive oil, dress ’em up in garlic and send them out on the town.
The Chef tells me that “peperonata” is an Italian condiment for meats, but it can also be a great fish-topper and is yummy served cold as part of an antipasta course. I just think it’s fun to say.
As long as you don’t take it too far like Giada de Laurentiis (You’re Italian! We get it!). If I hear her over-pronounce “spahhh-gihhh-ti” or mohhh-zah-reh-lllla” one more time, I’m gonna smack the perky right off of her face.
1/4 cup olive oil
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 orange bell pepper
1.5 tbsp of white balsamic vinegar
4 garlic cloves, chopped
salt to taste
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
- Slice peppers and onions thin.
- Heat oil in a large skillet on medium low heat.
- Add onions and peppers and salt. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes.
- Then add garlic, rosemary, and vinegar. Cook for about 15 minutes. Voila.
As wonderful as living in NYC was for 6 years, now that I have outdoor space and a grill, I realize how much I had been missing out. I love being able to grill. Unless I am baking, there is now no need for me to turn on the stove. In 110 degree heat and little kitchen air circulation, that makes me happy! Below is an amazing grilled artichoke recipe I found from whiteonricecouple.com. It taste unbelievable and is very easy. You have to use fresh artichokes, and find ones with a large stem. One thing I never knew until now, the stem is just a large extension of the heart. Don’t miss out on it! Preparing fresh artichokes seems like a daunting task but is honestly easy. This recipe gives a little bit of directions but there are tons of instructional videos online that can help. – ts
Chef’s note: You can substitute any herb for the tarragon in this recipe
6 medium artichokes with stems
4 tablespoons sea salt (for boiling water)
2 small lemons
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar (any vinegar will work)
3 tablespoons crushed garlic, divided
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2″ chunks
2 teaspoons sea salt, for sauce
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon
fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
- Bring a large stock pot 3/4 filled with water to a boil. While the water heats, trim the artichokes. Cut off the stems, and cut them into manageable lengths (usually in half). Peel the outer layer of the stems and rub with half of a lemon. Trim the top third off of the artichokes, then trim the tips of the remaining leaves.
- Slice the remaining 1 1/4 lemons into large wedges and put in the boiling water. Add the 4 T of sea salt to the water, then add the artichokes and stems. Place a few layers of paper towels over the artichokes to weigh them down, sinking them deeper in the water. Boil for 20-30 minutes or until the heart is tender when pierced and an outer leaf pulls off easily and the meat is tender.
- Drain and allow to cool upside down in a colander until easy to handle. Slice stems in half. Cut artichokes in half and remove choke with a small spoon.
- Combine olive oil, vinegar, and 1 T of garlic in a plastic bag large enough to marinate the artichokes and stems. Add artichokes and stems to the marinate, toss to coat, and allow to marinate 30 minutes to an hour.
- Heat a grill set up for direct heat. Remove artichokes and stems from marinade (reserving the marinade to make sauce) and grill artichokes and stems until lightly charred, about 5 minutes.
- Add remaining marinade to a sauce pan and heat over medium heat. Add remaining 2 T of garlic and cook until garlic is soft (about 3 minutes). Remove from heat. Whisk in butter chunks until completely melted. Add sea salt, lemon juice, tarragon, and black pepper, whisking to combine. Serve immediately with grill artichokes and stems.
Well corporate America, it’s almost quittin’ time on our most hallowed of holiday weekends. And nothing’s more American than using company time to do entirely personal things on a Friday afternoon, so that’s what I’m doing here.
This recipe is obviously of the rich and famous variety (because we clearly are SO VERY both), and it is as good as you think it is. The Chef made this in honor of our last dinner with The Grosshans (while we were still official Memphians, that is), and sitting on a porch eating this with a cold glass of white wine and good company is about as close to perfection as you can get. While you’re outdoors in Memphis in June, anyway.
The freshness of the tomatoes, the sweetness of the lobster and the bite of the balsamic make this dish truly addictive. So if you’ve decided to turn in your hot dogs for fancier fare this Fourth of July, this is a recipe not to be missed. (I obviously will not be doing that because hot dogs and me are an American love affair for the ages, but it’s your life.)
2 lobster tails
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons of butter
- Preheat oven to 375.
- Season lobster with salt and pepper and dab one tablespoon of butter on each tail.
- Roast for 10 to 12 minutes.
- Once done place in a ice bath to cool.
- Once cool dice and squeeze the juice of one lemon over them.
Caprese Salad with Balsamic Reduction:
2 yellow tomatoes, diced
2 orange tomatoes, diced
2 roma tomatoes, diced
salt to taste
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
1 cup balsamic vinegar
- Take one cup of balsamic vinegar and cook in a pot on low heat for thirty minutes or until it coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Season tomatoes with salt and toss with Basil Vinaigrette.
- Top with goat cheese and lobster. Drizzle balsamic reduction over salad and serve. (Makes 4 servings)
Luxuriate. That’s the only word that does this justice. And justice is American as hell.
So as it turns out, mangoes are kind of amazing. As in you know you like them but you’re not sure how much until they’re all dressed up in their killa heels and slinky black dress.
And I don’t mean to sound like a broken record, but combining mangoes with the fresh scallops from Paradise Seafood is simply and surprisingly blissful. I don’t know how, but all of their seafood that tastes like tiny sweet little lobsters. You put a perfect sear on one and hit it with this vinaigrette and you are dunzo.
2 ripe mangoes, peeled and rough chopped
1 lime, juice and zest
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon, fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon honey
salt to taste
1/2 cup of olive oil
- Place all ingredients except oil, 1 mango in a blender or food processor.
- Slowly add oil. Once blended, you are good to go.
- Toss the chopped avocado and mango together and reserve to top scallops with.
- Heat a non stick skillet on high heat.
- Dry off moisture from scallops. The Chef places them in between 2 paper towels. Usually on Bonnie’s counter instead of a plate like a normal person, but it’s your life. Do what you need to do.
- Salt and pepper scallops. Add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon of butter to the skillet.
- Add scallops to the pan and be sure not to mess with them or they will stick. Patience, my dear.
- Sear 2 minutes on each side for medium rare. “Cook longer for you and Bonnie,” says The Chef. Yes, I will eat meat that is still mooing, but for seafood I prefer it well done.
- Top scallops with mango vinaigrette and serve with mixed greens. Refreshing and tangy. Nothing better.
So okay, I don’t want to be a traitor to my generation and all (Clueless quote intended), but currently the North Carolina BBQ tradition is what’s flooding my Inbox. And until you Memphians step up your game or relinquish your sauce secrets, we’ll publish what’s being pushed, ya hear?
This is the sauce that goes with Lexington Pork Shoulder, and while I’m usually a Memphis BBQ purist, it sounds pretty darn good. Get mixy.
2.5 cups of cider vinegar
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp hot sauce
4 tsp salt
4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp white pepper
1.5 tbsp rub reserved from Lexington Pork Shoulder
- Mix all ingredients & serve. No heat required.
You know how sometimes people think hot girls are automatically stupid? Like there’s no way that something can look that good on the outside and not be either dumb or awful on the inside? Well, I think this salad is that hot girl. And this one actually reads Dostoyevsky for fun and got a perfect score on her ACT.
(Incidentally, I would hate that chick.)
What I’m sayin’ is there’s substance here as well as pretty. The avocado and cheese are rich, the tomatoes are juicy and tangy, and the croutons give you the perfect amount of crunch. Dress all that up in Balsamic and drive it around town in your new convertible? It will be like Weird Science in here. And everybody wants that. (Minus Chet.)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tsp honey
3/4 cup olive oil
juice of half a lemon
salt to taste
- Mix all ingredients except oil.
- Slowly add oil while constantly whisking until it emulsifies.
4 tomatoes, chopped
2 orange tomatoes, chopped
2 yellow tomatoes, chopped
1 ripe avocado, chopped
1.5 cups of diced mozzarella
1 cup of fresh croutons
salt to taste
1 tbsp mint or basil (optional)
- Mix together and toss in dressing.
- Eat and bask in the afterglow.