I love cookbooks. Old ones, new ones, cookbooks with stories and cookbooks with beautiful photographs. I love the obscure cookbook that no one is raving about; but the author is clever and talented, and the recipes are fresh and practical.
So in honor of the new year, and my love of all things food, I’m giving away cookbooks during the month of February!
But I’m so excited I can’t wait until February. So I’m giving away the first book in January.
Ruhlman’s Twenty, by Michael Ruhlman. A book of 20 cooking techniques and 100 recipes that will allow the home chef to become a super star in the kitchen. And of course I had to give one of the recipes a test run. The Weekday Coq au Vin is divine. A most aromatic and delicious dish that was truly simple to prepare, but tasted like it had been simmering for hours.
To enter, leave a comment on this post. Tell me what you’d most like to learn to prepare for dinner. And that’s it. You’re entered to win “Ruhlman’s Twenty”. I’ll draw the name of one lucky Fabulous Foodie on Friday, January 20th. Good luck everyone!
While were waiting for the exciting news, here’s another delicious and simple braised chicken dish that I prepare all winter long. Serve over creamy polenta and I promise you’ll want to lick you plate!
3 ½ – 4 ½ lbs Chicken pieces (thighs and legs work best)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and Pepper
8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup dry red wine
½ cup red wine vinegar
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
2 3inch sprigs of fresh thyme
¼ Teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 bay leaf
Fresh chopped parsley for garnish
Creamy Polenta (recipe follows)
Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper. Heat the butter and oil over medium high heat in a heavy bottom straight sided skillet or stock pot. Place the chicken pieces in the pan skin side down and brown each side about 3-5 minutes. Remove the chicken to a platter and set aside.
Spoon out all but a few tablespoons of oil remaining in the pan. Add the garlic and sauté for 30-45 seconds. Once the garlic is fragrant, add the red wine and vinegar. Let the wine simmer for a few minutes and then stir in the crushed tomatoes, red pepper, thyme and bay leaf. Place the chicken back into the skillet and bring the liquid to a boil. Then decrease the heat to low and cook for about 30-45 minutes or until the chicken is tender and cooked through.
Taste the sauce for seasoning and adjust with additional salt or pepper. Serve over Creamy Polenta and garnish with fresh chopped parsley.
Slightly adapted from a recipe by the brilliant Chef Virginia Willis
3 Cups milk
½ Cup quick cook polenta (if you can’t find quick cook, use regular polenta and follow the package directions substituting the broth or water for milk)
¼ Cup grated parmesan or Romano
Salt and Pepper to taste
Heat the milk in a 4 quart sauce pan stirring as you bring it to a boil. While stirring, add the polenta. Reduce the heat to low and continue to keep the polenta at a simmer for about 5 minutes. Once the polenta has thickened, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the grated cheese. Lightly salt and pepper to taste.
Plate the polenta and then ladle the Fricassee and extra sauce over the polenta. Enjoy!