Monday, April 5, 2010

Happiness is.....

Of all the things we could have done this weekend I just wanted to be home. My work has been oh so busy and we had 100yr storms here last week and many homes were flooded out, people had to evacuate. Roads are still closed. Kids have been fishing on Main Streets, but are lucky, We are high and dry, but one street over is closed down due to flooding. I decided to appreciate what I am blessed with. I just wanted to stay home and do some cleanup in the garden and not have to leave here. Our son's daughter and her Mom came to visit, a pleasant surprise...My daughter came by. We had just put our outside furniture back out and it was enjoyed! Sunshine in the form of flowers....sunflowers just make me smile:) Now when I want to work all day and not think about coming in to cook....this is a fave. Great for a party or a bunch of unexpected guests. The Barefoot Contessa is always a hit in my home. I have all her books and use them regularly. I have lots of cookbooks that sit on the shelf, but not hers, they are well used. This is her ~Chinese Chicken Salad~
8 split chicken breasts, bone in skin on
Good olive oil
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
1 pound asparagus, ends removed, cut into thirds diagonally
2 red bell peppers cored and seeded
4 scallions (white and green parts) sliced diagonally
2 tablespoons white sesame seeds, toasted
For the dressing
1 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup good apple cider
1/3 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons dark sesame oil
1 tablespoon honey
2 garlic cloves minced
1 teaspoon peeled, grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon white sesame seeds, toasted
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Place the chicken breast on a sheet pan and rub the skin with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until chicken is just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
Remove meat from bones, discard skin, and shred chicken into large, bite size pieces.
Blanch the asparagus in a pot of boiling salted water for 3 to 5 minutes, until crisp-tender. Plunge into ice water to stop cooking. Drain. Cut peppers into strips about the size of the asparagus pieces. Combine the shredded chicken, asparagus, and peppers in a large bowl.
Whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing and pour over the chicken and vegetables. Add the scallions and sesame seeds and season to taste. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Serves 12

This is the wonderful book I found the recipe in. A great way to end a wonderful day. Take it to a picnic, serve for lunch.Yummy!


Beth said...

I watch Ina's show all the time. Doesn't it make you want to invite yourself over her house for a weekend? Everything is so serene and inviting and she makes even run-of-the-mill dishes look amazing. Thanks for this post. Yummmmm

carolyn@primitive~devotion said...

I love Ina too! My nephew's wife is expecting a baby girl and they are naming her Ina. That salad looks so good!
Love your sunflowers. Those were my Mama's favorites.
I agree that all of us need to be thankful and aware of the many blessings in our lives. "Home" is a great place to have, wherever you might be.
Have a great week!

Jude said...

Oh, Donna, as soon as I am up and able to cook again, I'm going to try that. I do watch Ina from time to time, but I'm more a Giada girl.

Your blog is looking beautiful (boy oh boy, do I want to make the PB pillow!).I am so honored to be on the list of blogs you follow -- why didn't I think of that? I am adding you right NOW! Jude from

Anonymous said...

IS VERY GOOD..............................