Monday, July 22, 2013

Meaty Monday: Grilled Chicken Paillards with Corn, Green Beans & Basil Drizzle

Certain foods, I think, are etched into our national psyche as symbols of things near and dear to our heart. If you are eating cotton candy, chances are there's a Ferris wheel not far away,  and if you're munching a corn dog on a stick, there is probably a heifer wearing a blue ribbon in her halter within spitting distance. Corn, tomatoes, basil and green beans scream "Summer!" to me in a not so subtle way. If there is ever a time of year when these foods have reached their pinnacle of perfection, it is now.

Chuck likes grilled chicken. Actually he loves grilled chicken. Really loves grilled chicken. Really thin grilled chicken. If I was willing to serve it at least once a week on a regular day (have I told you about our Tuesday burger night....?), he'd be thrilled. Me, I like change. Especially different dinners.

Since I do like to make dinners that will make us both happy, I came up with this combo that even I could eat once a least during the Summer. The chicken is a simple as can be, "paillards" is just a way to describe very thin pounded slices of meat -- and the drizzle is somewhere between a pesto and a vinaigrette. This can become one of your favorite do-ahead meals. Add the two, to the corn, fresh beans and tomato, and the whole thing just sings. If you need a vegan or vegetarian (or if you are doing a Meatless Monday side dish), just replace the butter in the corn dish with evoo.

Yes, it's every bit as good as it looks. Yes, I did lick the plate.

Grilled Chicken Paillards with Corn, Green Beans & Basil Drizzle
Serves 4

For the chicken:

1/4 cup low sodium gluten free tamari soy sauce
1/4 cup dry red wine
2 garlic cloves, crushed (jarred equivalent is fine)
2T olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin (paillards)

For the drizzle:

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
3 garlic cloves, (jarred equivalent is fine)
1/2 cup evoo
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon kosher salt

For the vegetables:

1 tablespoon butter or organic corn oil
4 ears of fresh corn, shucked and kernels cut off the cob
1/2 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed and broken in half
1 small fresh tomato, diced
a few basil sprigs for garnish


1. Early in the day, mix the first 4 ingredients and pour into a zip top bag. Add the chicken and chill until dinner.

2. Place all the ingredients for the drizzle in a blender or a mini processor and puree. Place in a covered container in the fridge until dinner time.

3. At mealtime, heat the butter or oil in a medium saucepan, over medium heat, and add the corn and the green beans to the butter. Stir to coat and sauté for a few minutes. Add 1/3 cup of water to the pan, cover and let steam for about 3-4 minutes until the beans are tender. Remove the lid and cook away all the water. Turn off the heat and stir in 3 Tablespoons of the drizzle. Cover and set aside.

4. Heat your grill to medium high, remove the chicken from the marinade (discard the marinade) and grill the chicken about 3-4 minutes per side depending on how thick it is. Place on a platter and drizzle lightly with a bit of the basil drizzle to serve. Pass the extra basil drizzle on the side.

5. Turn the vegetables into a bowl. Sprinkle the tomato over the top and garnish with a basil sprig.
Delicious corn, green beans with basil drizzle and chopped tomatoes,
easily made vegan...

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