Friday, July 22, 2011

Weekly Food Challenge - Vanilla (not dessert)

David picked a common food this week, vanilla, but he specified that it couldn't be used in a dessert or pastry.  I don't know about you, but I've never even thought of using vanilla in an entree before!  Surprisingly, I found a lot of ideas that sounded tasty, and narrowed it down to one from Chef Michael Smith, with a few modifications.

We all really liked this recipe, the girls included, but we didn't think it tasted much like vanilla.  As it was cooking, it smelled deliciously vanilla-y, but the vanilla flavor in the final dish was subtle.  Actually, it's hard to describe exactly what the flavor of the end product was - not rosemary, not vanilla, not chardonnay, just yummy.

Vanilla Rosemary Chicken
serves 4

5 boneless chicken thighs
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 onion, finely diced
2 large handfuls baby carrots, finely chopped
1 cup chicken broth
cup chardonnay
1/2 vanilla bean (seeds scraped out, then finely dice the shell)
2 sprigs of rosemary, needles peeled off

Pour the oil in a large skillet, turn heat to high.  When the oil is hot, add the chicken.  Cook until chicken is golden brown on all sides, turning frequently.  Once chicken is browned, remove from skillet.

Add onion and carrots to the juice in the skillet.  Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until vegetables are softened. 

Add chicken broth, wine, rosemary, vanilla bean seeds and diced vanilla bean shell to the skillet, stirring until combined.  Place chicken on top of the mixture.  Cover skillet tightly, turn heat to medium-low, and simmer for 45 minutes until chicken is tender.  Remove cover, and let juices thicken until a sauce forms.

Serve over rice.

1 comment:

  1. I'll just add that I don't know what in particular about the flavor made it so tasty. But it was excellent - and the leftovers held up well, too!