You are currently browsing the Ted Kennedy Watson posts tagged: Wine & Dine Wednesday


Friday Night Pizza and Martinis 

Wine & Dine Wednesday has nothing to do with wine this week but it does about dining. I have written a bunch in the past of our Friday night tradition of having guests over for pizza & martinis. The above table was from last Friday where we had the artist Mindy Carpenter and her friend Kelly over the night before she presented her floral painting workshop. Oh the laughs we had! The post today is really about starting a tradition and changing it up to fit your needs. Pizza becomes Chinese take-out and martinis become wine. It really is about getting together with friends. Tweak the tradition how best fits the eve or group of folks you are inviting. I always set the table the night before or morning of so we can come home from work, light a few candles, turn on the music, order the food and wait for our guests to arrive.



 

 

Ina’s Parmesan Chicken

This Wine & Dine Wednesday is a recipe I tried a few weeks ago out on the island, that I learned from watching my beloved Ina on her ‘Barefoot Contessa’ show. I swapped out seasoned breadcrumbs for Panko and the Vashon Thriftway had chicken breasts that were already quite thin so I did not need to pound them to make them thin. Aside from that, from memory, I think I followed her instructions pretty closely and we enjoyed one seriously tasty one plate meal.

Prepare 3 bowls. One with flour that you add salt & pepper. Another with 2 whisked eggs and a splash of water. The third with the breadcrumbs that you add freshly finely grated Parmesan cheese. With the thin boneless skinless chicken breasts make sure they are patted dry with a paper towel. Then dredge in the bowl with the flour. Next it gets an egg wash bath. Lastly, a roll-around in the cheesy breadcrumb mixture. Repeat this with all the chicken you are cooking.

Now, in a large skillet add a good sized knob of butter and a big glug of olive oil. Cook the chicken on medium heat on the stovetop until each side is golden. She said about 3 minutes a side, mine were more like 5 minutes a side.

Plate that gorgeousness up, topping with an arugula salad that is dressed in that lemon vinaigrette I wrote about the other day. Lastly, grate a bit more Parm over the entire thing. Serve. Enjoy!



 

 

Meyer Lemon & Rosemary Infused Chicken

Still working through all the gorgeous Meyer lemons our friend Betsy sent us from her home in Healdsburg. This is an incredibly simple chicken dish that does most of the work on its own, as it cooks away for an hour on the stovetop. Ladled over noodles or rice, it is a comforting meal served to guests or enjoyed simply for a week-night meal.

I used skin on chicken thighs. Any cut of chicken will do, you just want to make sure to leave the skin on and that you use a pot large enough that it all fits atop the onion, lemon and rosemary mixture in one layer.

Here goes! Salt & pepper the chicken pieces liberally adding to a heavily olive oiled pot that you are going to cook the entire thing in. The pot you choose will need to have a tightly fitted lid. Cook chicken on medium high heat until the skin side is a browned, then flip and cook other side for a few minutes. You are not cooking the meat all the way through, as it will cook with everything else for an hour in a bit. Take chicken out, put on a plate and set aside.

Turn burner to medium low. In the same pot, now add a chopped up sweet onion or two, a Meyer lemon quartered and a few whole springs of rosemary. Toss all with the oil that was remaining to coat, adding a little more olive oil if needed. Then add back all the chicken, nestling it among the mixture. Be sure to add in any juices that accumulated on the plate the chicken was resting on. Turn the heat to low, put the cover on. Let cook for half an hour, checking it to see if it needs a splash of water or white wine at that point if needed. Most likely it won’t. Put lid back on and cook for another half hour. At the hour mark, check the chicken with a meat thermometer so it reads 165 degrees. Done! The Meyer lemon and rosemary will have done their magic. Discard. Ladle the onion mixture over your pasta or rice, then top with a piece of chicken.



 

 

Monday Night at Artusi

You all know I like sharing with you favorite places we enjoy dining. I love hearing shared stories from customers & readers who travel from far and wide who get to Seattle and try out one of our recommendations. I have written often of our major fondness of the Italian eatery, Spinasse. Artusi is the sibling, living right next door. They share the same kitchen, so you just know it is going to be sublime. Dining there anytime for dinner or for nibbles with drinks is grand, but Mondays they offer something quite special. I got to have a date night with my husband the other eve, enjoying their 2 pasta special + a bottle of wine for $35. Yes, you read that right, 35 bucks. I like a good deal as much as the next guy, but it has to be good. This is crazy good! I am still dreaming of the housemade, handmade pastas we enjoyed. If you are in Seattle on a Monday eve looking for a place to dine and be incredibly happy, Artusi is the ticket.



 

 

Parmigiano-Reggiano & Roasted Cauliflower Frittata

A frittata is one of those dishes you can make with just about anything you have in your fridge. I also love them for supper in a pinch. Last eve TPS was away and I whipped this up for a solo meal. We had part of a seeded baguette that was in need of eating before it went stale. A piece of Parm and a head of cauliflower spoke to me as I stood at the refrigerator door. We always have eggs so I knew a meal was soon at hand.

Cut up the cauliflower so you are left with small florets. Spread out onto a baking pan, douse with EVOO and a dusting of salt. Into a hot 400 degree oven, shaking the pan every 5 minutes until the cauliflower starts to brown in spots. Take out of oven, set aside. Turn your oven broiler on to heat up while you get the eggs ready.

Whisk 2 to 3 eggs in a bowl with a splash of milk. Add salt and pepper. Grate the piece of Parmigiano-Reggiano as well as cube some of it. I like the variety. Then heat up a skillet that can also go into the oven, with a knob of butter. Add the egg mixture. You want the heat on the stovetop to be medium low so the bottom of the eggs cook slowly. When it starts to set, add the cubes of Parm and the cauliflower sprinkling all around the frittata. Then add the grated Parm to the top. Now put whole thing into the oven under the broiler, making sure to watch it the whole time. It is so cool to watch it rise and bubble and cook right in front of you. When it starts to take on a slight brown, it is all done. 

This can easily be made in a larger pan with more eggs for a larger group. Add a salad if you want to make it a bigger meal. Tasty really any time of the day. 



 

 

Cassoulet To Go from Café Campagne

OK, you know you must really like something quite a bit when you write about it twice. Know I am smiling as I type this, but you must also know you have a 54 year old brain when you forget that you have written about it in the past… When Google searching with a question this early morning, my prior post from 2015 popped up. What a lovely post! Again, insert smile. Anywho, I love it so much it deserves a second showing. Café Campagne ‘Cassoulet To Go’ is one of my favorite take-away treats to serve at home on a chilly eve, and is our Wine & Dine Wednesday yummy post for the week. Chef Daisley Gordon has served the same cassoulet recipe for close to 25 years. Gordon’s variation uses two sizes of white beans to create an appealing texture, adding housemade morsels of sausage and duck confit. Add a salade verte, haricots verts, a baguette slathered in butter, your favorite red, and off you go. Perfect for two or order extra and host the easiest, yummiest small dinner party ever. That they are my neighbors at 86 Pine Street in the Market means you can pop in and say a quick ‘hi’ after you run in to pick up your order. Happy mid-week everyone! 



 

 

Meyer Lemon Marinated Olives

We received a box of Meyer lemons in the mail from friends in Healdsburg. They know us well! So we have been enjoying every slice and drop of the magical juice they produce. We had a ton of olives in the fridge so I thought I would infuse them with some of that Meyer lemon goodness. Plus these make great host/hostess gifts too. Easy as pie. Here is how I did it.

Slice up a lemon or two depending on the size and how many containers you are filling. Peel the paper off of one garlic clove and cut in half. That is really all the work, now you assemble. Lay a lemon slice or two on the bottom of the container. Then add some olives, really whatever olive you like best or have around. They can be pitted or not. Then add a piece of the garlic clove and a sprinkling of red pepper flakes, for a little layered heat. Cover all with extra virgin olive oil. Repeat until the container is filled. Be as artistic as you want when filling. You will use a good amount of olive oil, but never fear, it also becomes infused with the Meyer lemon oil and is spectacular to use when cooking fish or making a vinaigrette. Let the whole thing marinate on the counter for a few days. Then they are ready to enjoy. Refrigerate after a few days and let come to room temp when serving the olives to really bring out all the flavor. They just get more and more infused the longer the olives marinate. Serve just as is or alongside cheese and baguette. The olives are also crazy good chopped up with some of the oil and mix with a bit of feta atop a piece of halibut.



 

 

Garlic Vinaigrette by Alice Waters 

Since yesterday was Valentine’s Day and I really wanted to write that post, so it pushed back my Wine & Dine Wednesday post by a day, but I think it will be worth the wait. While in San Francisco a few weeks back, I was invited by one of my fab blog readers in Berkeley, to join her for dinner at Chez Panisse. The evening was sublime on so many levels, with many lovely memories. What I want to share is one of the more perfectly simple yet sophisticated all at the same time, a vinaigrette for the ‘garden lettuces’ we each began the meal with. Seriously, I have relived that salad over so many times in my head since back in Seattle. The dressing made the lettuces be the star. We had it for as part of our Valentine supper last eve, and it again just blew me away. 

You will need: 1 small garlic clove, salt, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, freshly ground black pepper, 3 to 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Find the best garden, or farmers market or grocery store lettuce you can get your hands on.

(1) Wash the greens and dry them well, first in a salad spinner and then by rolling them up in a towel. Refrigerate until used. (2) Put a peeled garlic clove and 2 big pinches of salt in a mortar and pound into a purée, with no chunks remaining. Add the wine vinegar, grind in some black pepper, and taste for the balance of salt and vinegar. Allow to macerate for a few minutes, and (3) whisk in olive oil. Taste the dressing with a leaf of lettuce. It should taste bright and lively without being too acidic or oily; adjust the salt, vinegar, or oil as needed. To dress the salad, put several generous handfuls of greens in a large bowl. Toss with about three quarters of the vinaigrette, taste. The greens should be lightly coated but not overdressed. Add more dressing as needed. 



 

 

Extra Virgin Olive Oil, White Wine & Fresh Lemon Juice

Between the fish stalls at the Market along with Bert’s in Madison Park when we are in town and the Vashon Thriftway out on the island, I like to make us fish at least once a week for supper, if possible. I used to find cooking fish daunting, always concerned about either over or under cooking it. I came up with a simple way to bake/poach fish, with sea bass, halibut and cod some favorites. It is a mix-up between things I have seen on cooking shows, food magazines we get monthly and blog recipes I have read. 3 simple ingredients–extra virgin olive oil, white wine (I prefer a Sauvignon Blanc) and fresh squeezed lemon juice. Plus salt but that to me is always a given. Here is what I do.

In a baking pan or dish a bit larger that the fish you are going to cook, pour the white wine to just cover the entire surface of the dish. It will be a few splashes of wine, not much really. Lay the fish in the dish on top of the wine. Then douse the fish with extra virgin olive oil, then salt. Lastly, squeeze the juice of a good sized lemon over the fish. The olive oil, salt, white wine and lemon juice will mix a bit naturally and become a poaching liquid for the fish.

Put into a hot 375 degree oven. Spoon over the liquid onto the fish every 5 to 10 minutes to keep the top nice and moist. The fish will vary on cooking time by how thick it is and the density of the variety. If you press your finger in the middle it will have some give. I almost always cut into the middle of the piece to just double check. When done, quite a bit of the liquid will have evaporated and what you have left over certainly spoon over the fish when serving if you like, or not. The fish will be super moist and you will wonder why you ever doubted yourself when it comes to cooking fish. 



 

 

Mushroom Melange & Beecher’s Flagship Cheese Frittata 

A frittata is one of my favorite things to make and it is quite easy. You can fill it with just about any combo of things you like, and it works for breakfast, lunch or dinner. I almost always serve it with a salad, even for breakfast. We had our niece Aisling visiting from Troy, New York out to the island this week-end along with her sister Haley, who lives in Seattle. I whipped up this version for a late breakfast before we headed back into the city on Monday. You can make these big or small, depending on your skillet size and how many eggs you use.

I like to get all the ingredients ready as this comes together quickly so you want the mushrooms sautéed and the cheese cubed or shredded before you begin cooking the eggs. Aisling picked up a beautiful bag of mixed wild mushrooms at the West Seattle Farmers Market that I cooked in butter, after cutting off the better part of the stem. Beecher’s is our neighbor in the Market and I adore their Flagship cheese, so I just cubed up a chunk for this.

Non-stick pan is key. Add a good sized knob of butter to the skillet and melt on low. While that is doing that, crack 8 eggs into a bowl, add a splash of whole milk, salt & pepper and whisk away. Add eggs to the buttered pan and keep on fairly low. Cook a bit and then scatter the mushrooms about and then add the small cheese cubes around the mushrooms. While this is cooking away turn on your oven broiler. You only want the eggs to cook enough so the bottom has started to set. The middle will still be quite undone. Once you can lift up the sides of the frittata a bit, it is now ready for the broiler. Here is where you must be diligent. Place the pan under the broiler and do not walk away or do another task. I even leave the oven door open a bit so I can watch it. I turn the skillet every now and then to make sure it is cooking evenly. It will puff up and get gloriously brown and the cheese will melt and it will be so good and you will be so proud of yourself because you will feel a tad chef-y. Insert smile. With a potholder carefully pull out of the oven. The handle will also be hot. It will deflate a little, but that is just part of the charm. Slice up, serve with toast or baguette. Enjoy, enjoy.