Little Italy Garlic Chicken – Butter – Garlic – Parsley – Lemon

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Little Italy Garlic Chicken is…

….Butter, Chicken, Garlic and Parsley plus a little lemon added to it. That is the whole shebang.  

Once again we have a “Quick and easy Recipe for Busy People” that is real real good.

Way back, when we lived in New Jersey we would frequently zip over to Little Italy in Manhattan for dinner.

Our very most favorite restaurant was this little place on Mulberry Street in Little Italy called the Grotto Azzurra aka The Blue Gratto in street speak.

It was opened in 1908 by a family of Italian immigrants and was named after the Blue Grotto on the isle of Capri. Which is just offshore from Naples.

When we were going there it was one level below street level and only had about 10 tables.

Frank Sinatra used to go there when he was in town as did Robert Dinero.  

Whenever we were there there were always a few “mob” looking types that you did not make eye contact with.

When we got in – after a wait in line – the server would immediately – and before any conversation – put a pitcher with some slices of oranges and lemons in it on the table and then pour in a bottle of red wine which then became Sangria. No questions asked, they would just do it for every party that came in.

I would almost always order the Garlic Chicken. It was, like so many good Italian recipes, simple and made with just a few fresh ingredients.

What I was served at the “Blue Gratto” very apparently was chicken thighs – skin on and bone in –  marinated in a garlic and oil mixture for at least a few hours, more likely over night.

Dredged in flour and sautéed in good olive oil with sliced garlic added at the last minute of the frying process. 

It would arrive with the garlic slices spooned over the chicken and topped with some chopped parsley and with just a little taste of lemon. 

It was fantastic!

After dinner we would walk around Little Italy for a little while and find our way around the corner to Ferrara’s Bakery and Cafe and have some of their world class Sfogliatella and/or……

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…..Cannoli

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with their made to order espresso that was brought to the table in the pot that it was made in and if you asked nice and had a history of tipping good a little Sambuca would magically appear in the bottom of your cup.

Forgive me when I say that I think that I have improved a little on the Blue Gratto version of Garlic Chicken….

….well,, for our “Quick and Easy” requirements anyway.

We don’t have time to marinate the chicken like they did at the Blue Gratto so let’s do it like this.

You can get pre trimmed and flattened chicken breasts in the grocery store or you could butterfly your chicken breasts and flatten them a little while wrapped in glad wrap.

For quick and easy I always have some of the pre trimmed version in the freezer and just thaw them out in the microwave.

Put a skillet on at medium high and swirl in enough olive oil to cover the bottom. 

Salt and pepper both sides of the breasts and pan fry them in the skillet for about 4-5 minutes a side.

When the liquid sneaking out of the breasts is clear and/or they are firm to a finger poke remove them to a plate that will catch the drippings.

While the chicken is cooking chop up the garlic cloves or just go with that pre chopped version that you can find in jars in the produce section and chop up the parsley leaves. Have the fresh lemon ready.

Reduce the heat to medium. Add the butter, let it melt and put the garlic in the skillet. Give the garlic just a minute or just until it starts to become fragrant. Put the chicken breasts and the drippings back in, squeeze the lemon juice in and toss in the rind. Turn them and spoon the butter and garlic on them as they warm back up. 

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When the chicken is warm, almost hot to the touch put in the parsley and do a little more of the turning and spooning.

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Serve it up!  Buon Appetito! 

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I put together some sautéed spinach as our veggie tonight and since we had some garlic and good extra virgin olive oil on hand (always) I had some pasta aglio e olio. Gammy eats gluten free so I put together some “spaghetti squash aglio e olio” for her.

 

Santa Margarita Pinot Grigio was our vino of choice to go with our Little Italy Garlic Chicken.

 

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Butter Chicken with Garlic and Parsley BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list Yum
Chicken sautéed with butter, garlic and parsley.
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Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
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Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
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Instructions
  1. Salt and pepper both sides of the breasts and pan fry them in the skillet for about 4-5 minutes a side. When the liquid sneaking out of the breasts is clear and they are firm to a finger poke remove them to a plate that will catch the drippings.
  2. While the chicken is cooking chop up the garlic cloves or just go with that pre chopped version that you can find in the produce section and chop up the parsley leaves. Have the fresh lemon ready. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the butter, let it melt and put the garlic in the skillet. Give the garlic just a minute or just until it starts to become fragrant. Put the chicken breasts and the drippings back in, squeeze the lemon juice in and toss in the rind. Turn them and spoon the butter and garlic on them as they warm back up. When the chicken is warm, almost hot to the touch put in the parsley and do a little more of the turning and spooning.
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Date Night Filet Mignon can lead to happy endings

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Date Night Filet Mignon

A long long time ago when Gammy and were out on our first date I wanted to impress her so I took her to the fanciest, snootiest restaurant that I could find.

Even though she had grown up on a farm she had never heard of “Filet Mignon”. I wanted to impress her with my sophistication and worldly knowledge – yeah  right – so I convinced her to try Filet Mignon. I just told her that it was a “high class” kind of steak that I liked. 

She said, “Ok, I’ll try something new. I’m  here with you aren’t I?”

When the waiter took her order and asked how she would like it she said, “I’d like it rare, please.”

We joked through a few double entendres about “rare” and how she would like it as we enjoyed our wine.

In my efforts to impress her I had ordered a good Italian pinot noir.

“Wow, this is good! I’ve never had wine before. Just beer and sometimes a little bourbon.”

Since that first date we have always shared a bottle of wine with our dinners.

When our filet mignons were served she said, “Oh, it’s beef tenderloin steak”. 

So much for my efforts at making an impression.

Still to this day, almost 40 years later, on our “date nights” we just about always have Filet Mignon accompanied by a good Italian red wine.

I’ve done our Filet Mignon a lot of different ways. From just pan seared with salt and pepper to pizzaiola and everything in between. 

This way has become our favorite. 

What makes this way so good is the butter mixture that you will use to cook the steaks in and also top them with as you serve them.

Take your steaks out of the fridge and let them get closer to room temperature while you put together your butter mixture.

And for that butter mixture cut a half stick of butter into pads and put the pads on your cutting board. 

Mince the garlic, zest the lemon and chop the parsley.

Put the parsley, garlic, lemon zest, dried basil, cayenne pepper and grated parmesan on top of the butter and……

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……using a table knife or a small spatula smash it and mix it all together. Then form it into a kinda mini loaf of bread shape.

I learned this recipe a long time ago working at a fancy restaurant while still in high school. The chef would have me mix up the butter mixture and put it in ice cube trays and freeze them. So then they would be waiting for us during the busy dinner hours.

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Put a skillet on at medium high and swirl in just about a tablespoon of olive oil and plunk in about a third of the butter mixture. 

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While the skillet is getting hot generously salt and pepper both sides of the filets.

When the oil and butter have stopped acting up and leveled out put in the steaks. The butter and oil will foam up again but that’s ok.

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Cook the steaks about 3 minutes a side then test them. When the steaks are just starting to get firm or they read 130° on an instant read meat thermometer they are rare. When they are definitely firm to a poke and read 165° they are well done. The in-betweens will give you medium rare, medium and medium well. I’m sure that your meat thermometer has the temperatures for all of the different meats listed on it.

Serve up your Filet Mignon steaks and top them with pads of the butter mixture and the liquid from the skillet.

 

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Some of Poppop’s easy homemade bread to dip in those juices is just about a must and for old times sake we had a real good bottle of Italian Pinot Noir with our Date Night Filet Mignon.

 

 

 

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Beef tenderloin steaks seared in and topped with butter laced with some herbs and spices.
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Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
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Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
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Instructions
  1. Take your steaks out of the fridge and let them get closer to room temperature while you put together your butter mixture. And for that butter mixture cut a half stick of butter into pads and put the pads on your cutting board. Mince the garlic, zest the lemon and chop the parsley. Put the parsley, garlic, lemon zest, dried basil, grated parmesan and cayenne pepper on top of the butter and using a table knife or a small spatula mix it all together and form it into a kinda mini loaf of bread shape.
  2. Put skillet on at medium high and swirl in just about a tablespoon of olive oil and plunk in about a third of the butter mixture. While the skillet is getting hot generously salt and pepper both sides of the filets. When the oil and butter have stopped acting up and leveled out put in the steaks. The butter and oil will foam up again but that's ok. Cook the steaks about 3 minutes a side and test them. When the steaks are just starting to get firm or they read 130° on an instant read meat thermometer they are rare. When they are definitely firm to a poke and read 165° they are well done. The in-betweens will give you medium rare, medium and medium well. I'm sure that your meat thermometer has the temperatures listed on it or they came with it on paper.
  3. Serve up your Filet Mignon steaks and top with the butter mixture and the liquid from the skillet.
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Salmon Filets with Lime Juice and Cilantro – 20 minutes – Quick and Easy – Gluten Free

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Salmon Filets with Lime Juice and Cilantro…

……is quick and easy and a real tasty way to put together a real good weeknight  supper.

When we were living in Mexico we learned to use limes instead of lemons and cilantro instead of parsley. Mostly because lemons and parsley were pretty damn hard to find and limes and cilantro were everywhere.

There was always lots of fresh fish available and this was our favorite way to throw it together. 

it’s easy to do and you will like it.

Rinse off and pat dry the cilantro and coarsely chop it up. Put it in a small bowl and squeeze in the lime juice.

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That juice squeezer that you see in the pic, we brought back with us from Mexico. You can get them here in the states and for limes especially they work real well.

Melt the butter in the microwave and add it to the cilantro.

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Put a skillet on the stove at medium high and eyeball enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom.

Rinse off the salmon filets and pat them dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Some optional additional herbs for the sprinkling are dried dill weed, dried basil, lemon pepper, garlic powder and on and on.

But just salt and pepper work just fine.

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If your salmon filets still have the skin on them put them in the skillet with the skin side up. If they have been skinned put them in with the flatter side, that has a gray stripe, facing up.

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Just about 2-3 minutes a side depending on how thick your Salmon Filets are.

When you can see the white liquid trying to escape from the middle of the  salmon filets  – it means that they are ready.

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Spoon the cilantro mixture on the filets while they are still in the skillet then put them on your serving dish. Then spoon the liquid from the pan on top.

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This Salmon Filets dish is a real good one. Enjoy it!!

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Salmon Filets with Lime Juice and Cilantro BigOven - Save recipe or add to grocery list Yum
Salmon filets pan seared and topped with cilantro, lime juice and butter.
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Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
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Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
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Instructions
  1. Rinse off and pat dry the cilantro and coarsely chop it up. Put it in a small bowl and squeeze in the lime juice. Melt the butter in the microwave and add it to the cilantro.
  2. Put a skillet on the stove at medium high and eyeball enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom. Rinse off the salmon filets and pat them dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. If your salmon filets still have the skin on them put them in the skillet with the skin side up. If they have been skinned put them in with the flatter side, that has a gray stripe, facing up.
  3. Just about 2-3 minutes a side depending on how thick your Salmon Filets are. When you can see the white liquid trying to escape from the middle of the salmon filets - it means that they are ready.
  4. Spoon the cilantro mixture on the filets while they are still in the skillet then put them on your serving dish. Then spoon the liquid from the pan on top.
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Pork Tenderloin Medallions Sautéed in Red Wine with Roasted Red Peppers – 25 Minutes – Quick and Easy

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Pork Tenderloin Medallions Sautéed in Red Wine with Roasted Red Peppers?

WOW….

…….that sounds like a tough dish to make. But it’s not. It definatly qualifies as a quick and easy weeknight meal. 

10 Minutes Prep time and 15 Minutes or less cook time and you will have it on the table.

You could sub chicken tenders or breast cut up into medallions for the Pork Tenderloin and beef or chicken broth for the red wine.

You can get roasted red peppers in a jar off the shelf at the grocery store. We make ’em ourselves and keep a small mason jar of them in the fridge. They are real easy to do and real tasty. Here’s how do it==> Roasted red peppers recipe.

Let’s get it going. 

Put a skillet on at medium high.

Whenever I buy pork Tenderloins I always get at least twice as much as I need for that nights supper and remove the silver skin from all of them with a sharp knife. Then the extra goes in the freezer in zip-locs. That’s where tonight’s pork tenderloin came from.

Slice the pork tenderloins crossways into about 3/8″- 1/2″ thick slices.

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Drizzle enough olive oil into the skillet to barely coat the bottom. Put the pork tenderloin medallions into the skillet getting them all spread out . Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Give them one minute a side max.

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Add the red wine, the butter, the roasted red peppers and the garlic. 

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Mix it all together and when the wine has reduced and thickened up a little it’s time to serve and enjoy your Pork Tenderloin Medallions Sautéed in Red Wine with Roasted Red Peppers. Bon Appetit!!  

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I multi tasked and put together some penne pasta aglio e olio as my starch tonight. Gammy is gluten free and paleo so she had spaghetti squash aglio e olio as her side dish. 

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Pork Tenderloin Medallions Sautéed in Red Wine with Roasted Red Peppers - 25 Minutes - Quick and Easy
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Cuisine American, French
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
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Cuisine American, French
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings
Ingredients
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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Instructions
  1. Put a skillet on at medium high. Slice the pork tenderloins crossways into about 3/8"- 1/2" thick slices.Drizzle enough olive oil into the skillet to barely coat the bottom. Put the pork tenderloin medallions into the skillet getting them all spread out . Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Give them one minute a side max.
  2. Add the red wine, the butter, the roasted red peppers and the garlic. Mix it all together and when the wine has reduced and thickened up a little it's time to serve and enjoy your Pork Tenderloin Medallions Sautéed in Red Wine with Roasted Red Peppers. Bon Appetit!!
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