Mains is really where it's at when you are everything free. There is still a lot of enjoyment to be had very easily in this department, and as I haven't been baking it's really where I've put my food energy. It kind of hit me the other night as I was serving Jacob dinner and I looked at the plate and thought "I should take a snap" and then "maybe I should blog this one". So here it is, our dinner from Monday night.
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It must have been the sound of the oom-pah music from the German Club farting it's way across the park. They're having Oktoberfest celebrations last weekend and this coming one, and from our veranda we are treated to drunken revelers in leiderhosen singing Ein Prosit on the hour. You can pretty much set your clock by it if you're so inclined. I haven't ventured over this year. Oketerfest isn't as fun as you think it is, if you are not drinking. Never-the-less, I've spent a lot more time thinking about bratwurst, sauerkraut and ham hocks then I usually do. And to my great surprise, on Monday night I made something schnitzel related which I have never done before or really even wanted to do before. So. Here's my brainwashed dinner - Macadamia and Sage Crusted Chicken Breast with Two Salads (neither sauerkraut thank goodness).
Salad 1 - Quinoa and beet leaves with roast capsicum
Brush the capsicum with oil to cover (I just rub it in with my hands) and then grill until partially black and blistered and set aside in a covered bowl to cool. I used one red and one yellow.
Dry roast the quinoa in a saucepan until you hear the first pop. Then add boiling water in similar quantities that you do for rice (2:1) maybe a little less water. When most of the water is absorbed, put your chopped beet leaves on top to let them steam for a minute or two until bright in colour. Remove the pan from heat.
Peel the blistered skins off the capsicum and remove seeds and stem. Cut into strips.
Stir it all together and add a good quantity of lemon juice and olive oil and a pinch of salt.
This salad is nice at room temperature and keeps Ok for the next day. I only used a small amount of quinoa (about 1/2 cup).
Salad 2 - Grilled zucchini with mint and goats cheese
Slice the zucchini into thin strips or even better, use a peeler to get lovely even thin strips. I did it lengthways.
Coat in olive oil and cook for a few minutes on a griddle. It gives those nice black stripes. I cooked my capsicum on one so i just used it for the zucchini. Cook till it is just tender. Sprinkle with mint, a nice goats cheese and a sprinkling of pepper.
Macadamia and sage crusted chicken.
Cut breast pieces into chunks (whatever size and shape you like to eat).
Make an egg wash by beating two eggs together.
Make the crumbs by putting a handful of macadamias, 6-8 sage leaves and some salt into a food processor. Add some rice crumbs which will help it hold together when you cook it.
Dip the chicken into the eggwash and then into the crumbs.
Cook in a pan on medium heat with a good coating of olive oil on the bottom. Using a lid for part of the cooking helps it cook through but make sure you remove it from time to time so that it stays crunchy.
Bon appetit! (wait that's French.... mmmm.... anyone help me on the German?)