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Chicken Tuscany


About 2 and a half years ago, my mom found some random recipe online. It was really simple and delicious she said. So I decided to try it out for a dinner party. It was our first dinner party ever, Mandi Rich and I fresh out of college living in Allston, MA and having 5 people over after work on Thursday to watch the office. Mandi and I worked on the meal while Rich (1/2 of design team) cleaned up and prepped for the guests. As we ate, we all just laughed the entire time. This was the best food any of us had ever tasted! I think that moment caused me to get more into cooking because seeing the joy on everyone's faces was really awesome. These days, I make this meal occasionally and it always reminds me of that night. It is no longer the best thing I have ever tasted since my palate has changed and I have eaten much more types of foods since then, but it always brings me back to those days on Lorraine Terrace.

Does anyone remember that party? Was it as good as I remember? Or was I just drunk... Anyways, the recipe is here. It is called chicken Tuscany although I don't think it has anything to do with Tuscany. We decided to put a Jamie Oliver risotto recipe with it. Before I get into the food part, I found 5 pictures from that party a few years back that I want to share with you.

Allison, Laura, and Mandi

Allison, Laura and Rich. What is that green drink?

Billy, Me, and rich. I was destined for food blogging.

Lookin good 2005 Dan. They could have more color on the top, but that's ok, you are learning.

Anyways, back to '08. Here is Mandi prepping the peppers.

You need to pound out the chicken breasts.

We got some gourmet salts from Amy when she went to Napa. I think we may do some taste tests next week. We used a little grey salt on the chicken in this dish just to try it.

A quick roast under the broiler. Don't singe them too much.

Wrap up the spinach and mozzarella in the seasoned chicken. Then shove this into the slightly roasted red peppers. Stand them upright and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

This is for the risotto. You marinade the tomatoes in red wine vinegar, olive oil and salt and pepper.

Jamie calls for crumbly ricotta. Or ricotta salata. I could not find it, but in my experience, it tastes like a mild feta. So that's what I got. Here it is drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with chile powder and oregano.

In addition to its fresh, soft form, ricotta is also sold in three preparations which ensure a longer shelf life: salted, baked and smoked. The pressed, salted and dried variety of the cheese is known as ricotta salata. A milky-white hard cheese used for grating or shaving, ricotta salata is sold in wheels, decorated by a delicate basket-weave pattern.

Begin the risotto like normal. Sweat some onions for about 10 minutes.

Then add the arborio rice grains and stir to coat.

Add white wine and simmer till evaporated. Then begin to add the simmering chicken stock ladle by ladle.

When it is halfway cooked, add ¾ of the marinated tomatoes.

The chicken stuffed peppers have gone 45 minutes. Turn on the broiler and add some provolone to the top. Broil for 5 minutes (if that)

Oh yea!

When the risotto is finished, remove from heat and add these things.

This was a great pairing. They went well together.

Our guests visiting from New England. What's that stain on ya shirt?

Chicken recipe.

Risotto recipe:

1 lb Arborio rice
Crumbly ricotta or a mild goat cheese.
Minced onions
Chile powder
Olive oil
Red wine vinegar
At least 5 cups of chicken stock. add some water if you need more volume.
White wine

Marinade the tomatoes in red wine vinegar, olive oil, and salt and pepper.
Preheat oven to 350. Crumble cheese onto baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, oregano, and chile powder. Roast for 10 minutes or until browned around edges.
Bring stock to a simmer
Place onions in pot and sweat for 10 minutes.
Add rice and stir to coat.
Add one cup white wine. Simmer until evaporated.
Add one cup of the simmering stock at a time. Stir until evaporated, then repeat.
When it is halfway done, add ¾ of the tomatoes.
When it is finished, add the rest of the tomatoes, parmesan, basil, roasted feta, and butter. Stir until incorporated.


I DO remember that dinner party! I think we were a combination of Drunk and excited that it was sort of like our first dinner party... That, and the fact that the meal tasted so delicious. I made it last year and it came out soooo good. I wish I had the risotto instead of Rice-a-roni, but oh well.

It seems like you went a little too much with roasting the peppers, they looked burned and squished, but still soooo good.

that green drink was probably either a Midori Sour or a Green Colored Beer or something else that those girls like to drink.

sooo note to self... dont die my hair brown EVER again?!? :) haha yay good times at lorraine terrace!

that looks effing fantastic. look at all that gooey cheese!

No way...I was just thinking about this recipe last week when I was looking for something to make for dinner! Somehow, even after the green drinks (midori, vodka and red bull...our obsession at the time) I remember Dan writing it down for me, but what I had just didn't seem right. Perfect timing...I'll be making this very soon:)

awww Dan, you just brought me back - I'm cracking up here at work remembering how much fun we all had together! You have proven to have excellent coordination in the kitchen, even after a few cocktails...

ok, ps. I definately need to retire that sweater, it's on like it's 9th year...

Hey All,

This is one of the guests from New England (the one with the stain). FYI, my fiance, the other guest from New England, hit my arm when I had just received a "top off" causing the drink to spill on my shirt.

More importantly, the meal was delicious. The 45-50 minute wait was a little painful but the end result was well worth it. Tender red peppers, chicken breast cheese and a few other things Dan mentioned all cooked together into a fine dinner entre.

Not a food connoisseur by any means but a critic nonetheless, I'd rate this dinner a A- to an A for it's great flavor and taste and I deducted a couple of points because of simplicity.

Thanks Dan and Mandi!!!

Check it out, they color coordinate!

What a delishious meal! You had cooked me and Cait a similar meal about 2 years ago...I remember being ridiculously impressed with the cheese oozing out of the pepper, and then hey lookie....a chicken surprise inside! It was sooooo good.

Wait...You musta made it w/o meat for Cait though. I forget.

This was the same night you introduced me to the amazing combination of fresh mozz, onion and fresh tomato. My mouth is salivating just thinking of it.

I miss you guys!!

i'm not a fan of white rice but i saw this and i new i had to try it. i had never thought to toast cheese or to go ahead and marinate the tomatoes before using them but what a differce these little steps make. my FAVORITE pic is the one where you dump everything in and its all jus sittin there ready to get all stirred in but you can still see it all! oh goodness...anyhow it turned out great AND i made myself sick eatin an insane amount in one sitting. i was like mmmm.....ugggg.....mmmmmm......ugggg. mmmm.

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