Before I go ahead with the recipe of the week, I feel it is important to disclose certain facts about myself. So everyone knows, I am by no means a professional chef and have absolutely no qualifications to offer any cooking advice. None. All information that will be passed forward to you is just from my own experience trying to create delicious and (usually) healthy dishes in the spirit of cooking. So please continue reading at your own risk, or alternatively consult chef Gordon Ramsey.
If you know me, you know that I possess a powerful lust for garlic. I seldom prepare a dinner without the addition of this marvelous ingredient. Rarely does garlic powder find it’s way into my cooking. We all understand the potency of fresh garlic… I’m sure everyone has had the experience of overindulging in a very garlicy ceasar salad or hummus. I myself have a weakness for the Lebonese garlic sauce (consisting only of oil and clove upon clove of fresh garlic.) Consuming this dip is always followed by periods of embarrassment in which John avoids me like the plague. I never learn, as this happens time and time again.
But what you may not realize, is that once cooked, garlic can be added to dishes in ample amounts. When John makes is chili, he adds at least 20 cloves. I go through heads of garlic when I make Greek food. Roasted garlic can be slathered on anything, as much as you like, and overkill does not exist.
This week’s recipe features this wonderful ingredient in abundence. So get out your dutch ovens, it’s time to make French Country Garlic Chicken! This embarassingly easy French dish requires 40 cloves of garlic (that is no typo!) Chicken, wine, garlic and herbs come together to create a surprisingly healthy and utterly delicious dish that should satisfy your garlic craving.
– The recipe calls for chicken breasts but I like to substitute boneless skinless chicken thighs (which I do for many recipes)
– Try using herbes du provance instead of thyme for your herbs.
– If you cook this in a dutch oven, instead of simmering this dish, try putting it in the oven . The difference this can make is amazing.
– Peeling 40 cloves of garlic can be a daunting taks. I myself have a device that peels garlic quickly, a rubber tube in which you roll the clove until the peel comes off. Fortunely, certain stores sell pre-peeled garlic (I have seen tthis at TNT, Walmart and Superstore.) However, if you don’t have any special aids, take the clove and cut off the hard tip with a knife, then hit the clove with the flat edge of the knife to split the peel. The peel should then come off easily. .
– Serve with roasted or mashed potatoes (I prefer mashed)
Ingredient I can’t live without:
GARLIC (who could have seen that coming?)
One thing to try is roasting a full head of garlic. Take afull head and cut off the top. Cover it in oil and wrap the full head in tin foil. Bake at 350 F for 30-40 minutes. You can now squeeze the garlic to get the roasted garlic out. Try spreading it on bread or topping whatever meat, potatoes or anything you can think of with it.
Herb of the week:
HERBES DU PROVANCE
What really makes this French herb blend special is the lavender. Try adding this herb blend to stews, or even for seasoning meat. I myself will often use it as a substitute for thyme to add that extra special flavour.
Well, hopefully you all manage to get your garlic fix this week, as garlic is one of those things that just makes life a little more special.
Click here to view printable Word version of recipe:
French Country Garlic Chicken
French Country Garlic Chicken
2 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
6 chicken breasts (alternatively, 8-12 bonesless skinless chicken thighs)
40 cloves garlic
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken broth
Thyme (or herbs du provance)
Chopped parsley to garnish.
Combine flour, salt, pepper and chicken in a plastic bag. Shake to coat chicken.
In a dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat. Add chicken and cook until just browned on both sides.
Remove chicken . Add garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for a few minutes.
Add wine, broth and herbs and bring to a boil. Add chicken and reduce heat.
Cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occaisionly. Sprinkle with parsley.