Weekly Main Course Recipes:  June 21, 2013

One:  Grilled Trout, Lemon Thyme and Lemon     Preparation, cooking time: 25 minutes
    If you have a basket for the fish it will hold them together nicely.  If not, tie them with kitchen string. 

2 whole trout - or whole fish of your choice, cleaned
1 lemon
1 bunch lemon thyme - if you have it or can get it, regular thyme if not.  Substitute 1 tbs dried

Slice lemon.  Put lemon slices and thyme inside the fish - as much as you can stuff in. Either put fish in grill basket or tie securely and use a grill mat.
Cook on barbecue grill over medium heat about 7 minutes per side or until done, turning once.  Can also be baked or cooked under the broiler. Times will vary according to the size and thickness of the fish.  When done the flesh should be opaque. 
Note: I skinned each fish and took out the back bone, lemons and thyme before serving but it also makes a nice presentation served whole.

Two:   Grilled Lamb Chops Dijon                             Preparation and cooking time: 20 minutes
     Mustard, garlic and rosemary are the perfect flavors for lamb....    

4 - 6 center-cut lamb chops - depending on size
1 tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbs chopped/snipped fresh basil
1 clove garlic
1 tsp Dijon-style mustard
2 tbs soft butter

Sprinkle chops with garlic powder, drizzle with oil and allow to sit until ready to cook.  Cook on barbecue grill over medium-high - high heat for 2 - 5 minutes per side.  Or in a non-stick skillet or grill pan for the same amount of time.  Timing, as always, depends on thickness and desired degree of doneness (I don't know if that is a word - but you get the idea).  We do ours on a hot grill 2 minutes per side for medium rare.  When you think they might be close take one off, cut into center and peak.  You can always put them back on to cook more - you cannot undo...
When done to your liking remove from heat, divide basil butter to top each chop and serve.
Dijon-Basil Butter: Mince garlic and basil together.  Put into a small bowl, add mustard and butter and mix well.  Can be made ahead, shaped into a log, chilled and sliced before putting on chops.   Or not!

Three:   Barbecued Chicken Thighs                       Preparation and cooking time:  35 minutes
   We didn't marinate the thighs but basted with barbecue sauce, like we would for proper Barbecued Chicken. Divide the sauce in half so you have some for dipping.

4 chicken thighs
1 tsp olive oil
salt, pepper
Barbecue Sauce
1/4 cup ketchup
2 tbs red wine vinegar
1 tbs soy sauce
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tbs olive oil

Sauce:  In a small saucepan gently heat all ingredients for barbecue sauce, except oil.  When warm, remove half of the sauce to a bowl.  Add oil to the bowl to make the basting sauce.  
Chicken: Rub thighs with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Cook thighs on barbecue grill for 25 minutes, turning once or twice.  Start basting after 10 minutes and baste 2 - 3 times.  They'll be done when they are nicely browned and the juices run clear when pierced with a knife.  Serve with remaining barbecue sauce on the side.

Four:  Ham, White Bean Salad / Thousand Island Dressing           Time:  20 minutes
    Assemble the salad while the eggs cook. Toss a little dressing with the lettuce, drizzle more on top.  Easy, summer salads.

8oz (240gr) ham
2 hard boiled eggs
2oz (60gr) white cheddar or other cheese
1 1/4 cup (10oz, 300gr) white beans
3oz (90gr) yellow cherry tomatoes   or regular or red
2 tbs fresh chives
enough lettuce for 2 main dish salads
Thousand Island Dressing:
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
2 tbs ketchup
1 tbs white Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tbs capers, chopped
2 tbs good olive oil

Cook eggs.
Prepare lettuce, tear and put into a large salad bowl. Snip chives and add to lettuce
Make dressing:Put all ingredients in a bowl and whisk well to combine. . 
Cut ham into cubes.  Cut cheese into smaller cubes. Open, drain and rinse beans.  Reserve unused portion for another use.  Slice tomatoes. When eggs are done peel and roughly chop. 
To make Salad:  Add 3 tbs dressing to lettuce and toss well to combine. Top with tomatoes, cheese, ham, beans and eggs.  Drizzle a bit of dressing over the top and serve, remaining dressing on the side.

Five:  Golden Chicken Breasts, Grilled                   Preparation and cooking time: 30 minutes
   When you are marinating any sort of meat it helps to poke a fork into it a few times, then turn the meat several times to soak up the marinade.  The orange marmalade and sherry give the chicken sweetness, while the ginger and garlic add some heat.

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 tbs soy sauce
3 tbs orange marmalade
3 tbs dry sherry
1/4 tsp powdered or 1 tsp fresh, chopped ginger
1/2 tsp garlic powder - or 2 cloves minced

In small bowl mix all ingredients for marinade.  Put chicken breasts in shallow baking dish (or something with sides) and pour marinade over.  Let marinate for 15 minutes.   Cook on barbecue grill for 12 - 15 minutes or until done.  Test by taking a peak - stick a knife in the center and see if it is still pink - if it is, cook another 5 minutes.  Can also be baked in 400F oven for 20 - 25 minutes or until done - test.  Remove and serve, sliced if you like.

Six:   Southwestern Salad with Grilled Sausages    Preparation, cooking time: 20 minutes
     The quinoa, corn, beans and peppers give this salad a 'southwestern' flavor.  The oregano, Greek olives and feta a Mediterranean flavor. An eclectic Salad!  It's equally good with turkey, chicken or sausages!

8oz (250gr) sausages, any flavor
1/3 cup quinoa, rinsed if needed 
2/3 cup (5oz, 150ml) chicken stock
8oz (240gr) sweet corn
5oz (150gr) white beans
1/2 red pepper
1 avocado
4oz (120gr) feta, crumbled
1/3 cup dry-cured Greek olives
2 tbs fresh oregano, snipped if large leaves
1 tbs fresh, snipped chives
Lettuce - enough for 2 main meal salads
Honey French Vinaigrette:
2 tbs ketchup
1 tbs red wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon-style mustard
1/4 tsp paprika
1 tsp honey
3 tbs salad olive oil

Put quinoa and chicken stock in a small saucepan.  Cover and simmer until done, about 15 minutes. 
Make the vinaigrette:  Mix ketchup, vinegar, mustard and honey.  Slowly add olive oil, whisking constantly.
Open, drain and rinse the sweet corn and white beans. Slice the pepper.  Slice the avocado (techniques).  Cut the olives in half.  Cub or cut the feta.  Tear the lettuce and put into a large salad bowl along with the herbs. 
Cook the sausages on barbecue grill or sauté in nonstick skillet until done, 8 - 15 minutes, depending on size.  Remove and cut into 1 1/2" (4cm) lengths.
To assemble: Add half of the vinaigrette to the lettuce and toss well to coat.  Add beans, corn, pepper and the rest of the vinaigrette, toss well.  Add sausage, olives and avocado, toss gently.  Sprinkle quinoa, feta on top and serve.

Suggested menus:

One:  Tomato, Caper and Herb Salad
Grilled Trout, Stuffed with Lemon and Thyme
Barley with Chives
Sautéed Chard with Feta and Olives
Two:  Chilled Courgette (Zucchini) Soup
Grilled Lamb Chops Dijon
Grilled Pepper Pasta Salad
Three:  Barbecued Chicken Thighs
Warm Potato Salad with Green Beans
Four:     Ham, White Bean Salad
with Thousand Island Dressing

Fresh Fruit
Five:  Grilled Golden Chicken
Simple Pasta Salad
Sautéed Courgette (Zucchini), Pepper and Tomato
Six:  Southwestern Salad with Grilled Sausages

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