Sunday, October 24, 2010

Carmela Soprano's Chicken Paillards with Tomato-Olive Salad and Anna Sultana's Brodu tat- Tigliega (Stewed Chicken in Broth, Maltese Style)

Last week I tried a recipe from the Fit for a Bride Chapter.  Enough said about how Roasted Potatoes could just drive a Bridezilla like Janice over the edge.

This week Paul was in Ottawa where they are showing his cartoon at The Ottawa International Animation Festival.  

Just your basic business trip.

Time to crack open the Small Events for Women Only chapter in Carmela's Entertaining with The Sopranos, invite some gal pals over and entertain them, New Jersey-style.

We live in Winnipeg's North End.
Enough said.

Sometimes things just work out, you know?  There is a recipe for Chicken Paillards with Tomato-Olive Salad.  Sobeys has boneless, skinless chicken breasts on sale.  I still have some tomatoes left from my garden. 

It was meant to be.

Okay.  I pounded the chicken breasts until they were 1/4 inch thick.  Why I'll never know.  But, I followed the recipe and beat the little boobies.  

I thought I had to since I cheated on the salad.  
Carmela uses mesclun.  
Did I mention I live in the North End.  
Romaine or Iceberg.  Take your pick. 
Easy olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing.
Don't forget the black olives.

Back to the breasts... after the pounding, they are tossed with olive oil, thyme (or basil), salt and pepper.  Then they're cooked on a lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat, 5 minutes on 1 side, 2 minutes on the other.

This should've been in the Fit for a Bride chapter.
Weight Watchers would love it.

Did Ma make Chicken Paillards?  No.  

To be honest, chicken doesn't feature strongly in Maltese cookbooks.  Ma would fry chicken parts, with their bones and skin still attached.  She would also roast whole birds, chickens and turkeys.  

One recipe that does feature chicken in Maltese cookbooks is Chicken Broth, Brodu tat- Tigliega.  Soup is a staple in Maltese homes, especially during the winter.

As it's almost November, it's just the right time to make some soup.

In a dutch oven place
1 stewing hen
the giblets, except for the liver and heart
Chop and add
1 large carrot
1 stick celery
1 onion    
2 potatoes
some chopped parsley
2 litres of chicken stock (made with 1 chicken cube)
Simmer gently on low heat until the chicken is cooked, about 2 hours
1 teaspoon tomato puree
the liver and heart
3 tablespoons of rice or small pasta
Cook until done
Remove the chicken and either serve it as a main course or cut it up and serve it with the broth.

Would I make the Chicken Paillards again?
Well, I'm going to try the breasts, unpounded, and see if it makes a difference.
I don't think it will.
The Tomato-Olive Salad?  Sure.

Would I make more soup?
Is the Pope Catholic?

Another recipe down.  Forty more to go.

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