Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Recipes: Chicken Ratatouille

Chicken Ratatouille

This is my recipe for a delicious and relatively simple summer meal.

1 whole 5-6 pound chicken cut into parts and skinned (reserve the chicken back and gizzards for stock).
2 cloves garlic crushed or grated
1 medium sized onion diced
2 medium sized zucchini diced
2 medium sized yellow squash diced
2 peppers (any color, chopped)
6 T olive oil
4 T butter
3-4 medium to large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
2 T chopped fresh oregano

Heat half of the oil and butter in a heavy covered pot over medium high heat. Add the chicken and garlic. Brown chicken on both sides and turn down the heat and cover. Stir every 5 minutes and cook about 25-30 minutes.

While the chicken is cooking, heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over a medium heat. Add the onions and brown (about 3-5 minutes). Add the zucchini, squash, and peppers cook until tender (another 5 minutes). Add the tomatoes and oregano and set the heat to low. When the chicken thigh is cooked through, add the vegetables to the chicken. Allow to simmer about 5 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve with chicken quinoa. Serves 4.

Chicken Quinoa

3 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cups quinoa
1T chopped parsley

Bring stock to a boil (if you have reserved the chicken back and gizzard add 1 chopped onion, or use your vegetable trimmings from the ratatouille, boil for 30 minutes with 6 cups water). Add quinoa. Stir occasionally for 20-25 minutes or until the quinoa is soft and starts to unfurl its white seed curl. Add 1 T chopped parsley. Salt to taste.

NOTE: I like to buy the chicken from a local chicken farmer who raises his chickens free range. Check your local farmers market for home grown chicken. This meal can also use eggplant, if you have it available, or may be stretched with extra veggies. If you are stretching the meal, you may consider picking the chicken from the bone and mixing it in casserole style.

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