Chicken Tikka Masala

This dish pretty much sucked. It wasn’t anything I would spit out or toss in the trash, but I certainly wouldn’t make it again and I am so not looking forward to the leftovers. Don’t try this one at home. There are so many other swoon-worthy Indian dishes that take less time and are far more rewarding.

Oh well, can’t win them all. We had a delightful fresh salad, however, which was brimming with Farmer’s Market fruits and vegetables.

Summer Salad with Peaches

Summer Salad with Peaches

Tikka Masala

Tikka Masala

Tikka Masala

Tikka Masala

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Making the Most of Summer Tomatoes & Basil

Wow was this ever simple and delicious. Roasting tomatoes is marvelously simple and so good I just want to eat the whole pan with a spoon. But I didn’t. I plan to make these tomatoes all summer long with bushels of Farmer’s Market tomatoes. I will spoon them over bread, spread them on sandwiches, sprinkle them over roast pork and serve them with fresh cheese. Yum!

I also highly recommend making a vat of basil oil to keep in the fridge. If you are swimming in fresh basil, this is a great way to use it up. Drizzle the oil over cheese and tomatoes, on omelets, fresh fish … you name it.

BASIL OIL:

Bring a pot of water to a boil and salt generously. Fill a medium bowl with ice water. Place 2 to 3 cups fresh basil in the boiling water and blanch for 15 seconds. Remove with a skimmer and transfer to the ice water. Drain and squeeze out excess water, then place on a clean dish towel and again squeeze out as much water as you can. Place the basil in a blender with 1/2 to 3/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil. Blend one to two minutes until the olive oil is green and tinged with flecks of basil. Transfer to a squeeze bottle and refrigerate. (Recipe adapted from the NYT)

I served the chicken with a side of caponata full of fresh eggplant, green peppers and onions. The addition of capers, green olives, raisins and pine-nuts makes this incredibly flavorful.

Weekly Menu — 7/27/2013

Week of July 27th

Saturday:
  • Grilled chicken breasts with fresh cheese and honey-roasted cherry tomatoes:  my plan for this chicken is to coat the breasts with finely grated Parmesan cheese, then grill and top with a slice of fresh cheese (mozzarella, burrata or Camembert are all good choices), then spoon the tomatoes over the top.
  • Caponata

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Sunday:

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Monday:
  • Indian butter chicken (also known as chicken tikka masala): this recipe comes from my favorite Indian cookbook — Indian Home Cooking  by Suvir Saran. This is one of the few recipes in the book I have yet to try, so I am looking forward to tasting this classic dish.
  • Mint raita: a riff on the classic cucumber raita with yogurt and lemon juice
  • Grilled farmer’s market vegetables

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Tuesday:
  • We are taking advantage of Baltimore’s summer restaurant week and are headed out to dinner this evening

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Wednesday:

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Thursday:
  • Leftover Indian
  • Green salad

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Friday:
  • Date Night!