Chicken schnitzels with lemon and caper butter

Regular readers of this blog will no doubt know that I love cooking and eating breaded fried meat items. Goujons, escalopes, tonkatsu, schnitzels, Continue reading

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Linguine with chicken livers, mushrooms and rocket

This was a quick evening meal last week.

I love chicken livers, so long as they aren’t cooked for too long they have a lovely melting quality, and they go really nicely with pasta and mushrooms.

They need a little bit of preparation, mainly some trimming to get rid of the connective tissue and any tubes and discoloured bits, and that is it.

They are best seasoned and sautéed in some butter and olive oil so that the outsides are cooked but the insides are still slightly pink.

At this point, you could liquidise them and make a chicken liver paté, with some other ingredients, but for this dish, you just set them aside and then cook a chopped shallot, some crushed garlic and a few sliced mushrooms in the same oil and butter and cook the pasta of your choice.

When the pasta is done, drain it and finish off the livers by returning them to the pan with the mushrooms and adding a splash of sherry of Marsala and a splash of cream, stirring to make a bit of a sauce.

Then add the pasta to the pan with a nice handful of rocket, which will wilt in the heat.

Taste, adjust the seasoning and serve with lots of grated pecorino or Parmesan cheese.

A meal in about 15-20 minutes, including preparation time.

Turkey involtini with a potato cake

One of the things that struck me when I was in Rome was the simplicity of a lot of Italian dishes and the lack of rich sauces and complicated garnishes.

This dish was inspired by that simplicity and lightness.

The involtini were made with slices of turkey breast fillet, beaten out and rolled up with a thin slice of Speck and a piece of Provolone cheese inside. They were held tight with a cocktail stick and sautéed in butter and olive oil, with a glass of Marsala added towards the end of the cooking time, which reduced down to leave just a glaze on the meat.

These were served with a simple fried potato cake made from mashed potato, shaped and floured and then cooked in small blini pans to help them keep their shape.

A salad of rocket, dressed with a balsamic vinegar and olive oil dressing completed the plate.

Turkey saltimbocca

Traditionally saltimbocca is made with thinly-sliced veal but this version with turkey breast meat is also good.

You need turkey breast steaks that you have cut thin and beaten with a meat mallet. On each piece you lay a slice of Parma ham and a couple of sage leaves. Then you fold the escalopes in half and secure them with a cocktail stick.

They are simply fried in some olive oil and butter for a few minutes on each side and then you add a small glass of Marsala to the pan and cook this on a high heat so that the wine reduces slightly.

Spoon the reduced Marsala and pan juices over the little parcels of meat, remembering to remove the cocktail sticks when you serve them.

I served these last night with some buttered new potatoes and a salad of little gem hearts, red and yellow chicory, rocket and tomatoes, dressed with an olive oil and balsamic vinegar vinaigrette.

Spaghetti with rocket, pancetta and croutons

A nice simple weekday supper.

All you need is;

Spaghetti
Stale bread – cut into cubes
Pancetta – cut into lardons
Rocket
Parsley
Parmesan cheese
Black pepper
Olive oil

You cook the pasta and while it is cooking you sauté the croutons in olive oil and set them aside. Then you fry the pancetta in some more oil and when the pasta is done, drain it and add it to the pan of pancetta, stirring it in so it is coated in the oil. Then you add the parsley and rocket and mix everything together so the rocket wilts in the heat from the pasta.

Finally, add in the croutons, season with black pepper and serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.