Friday, October 9, 2009

Mediterranean Chicken Stew with Polenta

I have 6 entries to catch up on but I have 2 funny thing to talk about in regards to this recipe
1-I am a notoriously bad speller. I used to be great at it but now my mind is so scattered I always make a ton of mistakes and I am sure if you read this blog you have spotted more then a fair amount. So if you see the 1st word of this recipe you can imagine the struggle I had to spell it. I knew there were t's and a d and ended with an n, but other then that it was hopeless. So I take this chance to apologize for all of my spelling errors. I really do try but its hard to teach and old dog new tricks and spell check doesn't catch them all!

2-I was shocked to find out that Polenta was actually corn grits!!! WHAT????? Polenta sounds so exotic and tasty but Grits, well I would say ewwww I dont like them, but guess what I ate them and didn't know it. The package of Polenta actually had a ( ) that said Corn Grits written in, if not I would have never known.

For the record I also didn't know that Chili Powder wasn't just chilies. Its in fact a lovely mixture of a few different spices. Thank you Tyler Florence for that tidbit of knowledge.

AND, did you know that Relish is Pickles????? I still cant get over that one.

And which one of my Stroller Strides Moms pointed out that Sauerkraut was Cabbage...huh? Never realized.
If you don't actually know me and read this blog I swear I am not that stupid.....well some might argue but I think I am just more willing to admit my lapses in intelligence.
Onto the dinner I cooked let's see MONDAY--yes I am that far behind (its Friday)
Mediterranean Chicken Stew with Polenta
borrowed from Everyday Foods Cookbook

1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
Coarse salt and ground pepper
3 teaspoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 can (15.5 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
4 plum tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2 cups)
2 tablespoons chopped pitted Kalamata olives (about 5)
1 teaspoon white-wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Creamy Polenta, for serving

Season chicken with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
In a large nonstick skillet, heat 2 teaspoons oil over medium-high heat.
Add chicken, and cook, turning occasionally, until golden, 3 to 4 minutes.
Transfer to a plate.
Reduce heat to medium-low; add remaining teaspoon oil to skillet.
Add garlic, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add chickpeas and 1 cup water.
Bring to a boil; cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
Add tomatoes; cook over medium heat until starting to break down, 3 to 4 minutes.
Add olives, vinegar, and chicken along with any accumulated juices to pan; toss until warmed through, about 1 minute.
Stir in parsley.
Serve over polenta.

This is a really quick recipe to prepare with good results. I did let the tomatoes cook down too long but it just made it more saucy them thick. It had good flavor and I would go with the fresh parsley if you can. It gave it a nice punch of fresh flavor. This is a really great quick weeknight comfort food meal. This was the 1st time I had made Polenta and really eaten a slow cooked version. it was AWESOME!!!!! It was really very simple to make and I will be making it a lot more in the future. I could see just eating a bowl on a cold afternoon, when I don't feel like making soup. It was so rich and comforting (and I am sure low fat) But I didn't add too much cheese and I didn't use too much butter. Click on the link in the ingredients for the recipe I used from the same cookbook as the stew. It was by far my favorite part of the meal.

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