Posts Tagged With: proscuitto

Chicken alla Valdostana

Italian Entree

CHICKEN ALLA VALDOSTANA

INGREDIENTS

4 chicken breasts
¼ cup flour
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt
1½ tablespoons butter
1½ tablespoons olive oil
½ cup dry white wine
4 proscuitto (aka Parma ham) slices
4 slices Fontina or Gruyère or Gouda slices

SPECIAL UTENSIL

kitchen mallet

Serves 4. Takes 45 minutes.

PREPARATION

Pound chicken breasts with kitchen mallet until they are ½” thick. Add flour, pepper, and salt to mixing bowl. Add chicken breasts to bowl. Turn chicken breasts until they are thoroughly coated. Add butter and oil to large frying pan. Use high heat until butter melts and foams. Stir frequently to ensure even melting. Add chicken breasts. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes on each side on until both sides turn golden brown. Remove chicken and set aside. Keep butter and oil.

Add wine to pan. Heat for 3 minutes or until liquid bubbles. Stir frequently. Top each chicken breast with a slice of proscuitto and a slice of Fontina cheese. Return chicken to pan. Spoon liquid from pan over each chicken breast. Cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 5 minutes or until cheese melts. Pairs well with the expensive Italian white wine your guests should be bringing.

TIDBITS

1) One of the most successful series of booklets ever is “Where’s Waldo?” Here, a child needs to find the character WaldoTM hidden on a page with of hundreds of lookalikes. This challenge gives new mothers time to perform only distantly remembered pleasures such as taking naps or being undisturbed in the bathroom.

2) In Italy, however, they play “Where’s Valdo?” This title of this recipe is one example. “Valdo” is cleverly hidden in “Valdostana.” Yes, this is a word game in contrast to the pictorial “Waldo.” In this case, young Italian mothers invite their little ones to find “Valdostana” in the daily newspaper. Sometimes it takes all day to find that word in print. This gives mothers a golden chance to get things done. And all that reading does wonders for children’s vocabulary. Indeed, most six-year olds in Italy can read at the fifth-grade level.

Chef Paul

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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Chicken Prosciutto Sandwich

Fusion Entree

CHICKEN PROSCIUTTO SANDWICH

INGREDIENTSChickenProscuitto-

4 chicken breasts
1 cup aioli sauce
6 ounces mozzarella
1 Roma tomato
4 sesame-seed hamburger buns
1 cup bread crumbs
8 slices proscuitto
4 lettuce leaves
no-stick spray

SPECIAL UTENSILS

kitchen mallet
parchment paper
3 cookie or baking sheets

Takes 1 hour 40 minutes. Makes 4 sandwiches.

PREPARATION

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Flatten chicken breasts with kitchen mallet. Add chicken breasts and aioli sauce to large mixing bowl. Turn chicken breasts by hand until chicken is thoroughly coated. Put in refrigerator and marinate for 1 hour.

While chicken marinates, cut mozzarella and tomato into 4 slices each. After marinating, add bread crumbs to 2nd mixing bowl. Place a mozzarella slice on each hamburger-bun top. Remove chicken breasts from 1st mixing bowl, saving the remaining aioli sauce. Dredge chicken breasts through bread crumbs until they are completely coated. Spray 1st cookie sheet with no-stick spray. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes. (You will be adding two more cookie sheets after 13 minutes.)

While chicken is baking, place parchment paper on 2nd cookie sheet. Place proscuitto on top of parchment paper. Place all hamburger bun halves, including the ones with cheese, on 3rd cookie sheet. After the chicken has baked for 13 minutes, add the proscuitto and the cheese-covered buns to the oven. Continue baking for another 7 minutes or until chicken crumbs are golden brown, proscuitto is starting to become crispy, and the cheese on the buns has melted.

Spread saved aioli sauce on hamburger-bun bottoms. Place lettuce leaf on bottom hamburger bun. Put chicken breast on lettuce leaf, then add 2 prosciutto slices. Complete with cheese covered hamburger-bun top.

TIDBITS

1) Have chicken prosciutto sandwiches always been round?

2) No! Prior to the siege of Picanza, Italy by Napoleon’s troops in 1813, they were triangular. The Picanzans found that shape easy to hold while eating.

3) The triangular sandwiches were also deadly weapons in the hands of the town’s ninjas, particularly after the snack had hardened from being left out in the hot Italian Sun for two weeks.

4) Oh! Don’t forget to go to Picanza’s annual Ninja Chicken Prosciutto Sandwich Toss Festival every April 1. Teams from all over the world compete for the Golden Sandwich Trophy, although Italy and Japan have done all the winning. Be sure to get out of the way of the tosses!

4) The odor from two-week old prosciutto often drove away invading armies just by itself. Well, at least until 1767 when it became standard for armies to carry pumpkin-spiced incense sticks.

5) But in 1813, the clever Napoleon constantly moved his troops upwind from the city. The gale forces winds of that summer continually blew the chicken-prosciutto-sandwich-death triangles back into the city whey dealt widespread carnage among the cafe drinkers. To this day, Picanzans always drink their espresso inside.

6) It looked bad for the Picanzans. The French would fire cannon balls into the city. The Picanzans unable to hurl their hardened sandwich resorted to making scary faces at the besiegers. It was an unequal struggle.

7) Thank goodness for the annual Bowling Ball Festival. Unlike most bowling festivals, this one took place on the precipitous Strada Ripido. Why was it held on such a steep street? The competitors used Parmesan wheels as bowling balls and those 200 pound rounds are heavy. Francesco Poblano suggested they crush the French army by rolling Parmesan cheese at them. The mayor said, “Are you crazy! How will we make eggplant Parmesan?” The ever-clever Franceso said, “Why not make our chicken prosciutto sandwiches round. That way, when they don’t get eaten, we can roll the hardened sandwiches down our steep hills and crush the French down below.”

8) The mayor and other notables proclaimed Francesco a genius and erected a statue in his honor made of bread crumbs and eggs. That statue is still there.

9) Anyway, the Picanzans rolled chicken-prosciutto sandwiches dried out to death dealing hardness at Napoleon’s forces. The bowled over French fled the surrounding hill in terror. Napoleon suffered an irreversible blow to his prestige. Nations all over Europe took courage from his humiliation and rose up against him, swamping the French armies by sheer force of numbers.

10) By 1815, the once great French emperor was exiled to the remote island of St. Helena, where he eked out a tenuous living selling French-style hot dogs out of a vending cart.

11) Oh! Don’t forget to go to Picanza, Italy for its annual Bowling Ball Festival. It’s exciting, particularly if you watch the event at the bottom of Strada Ripido. I suggest paying extra for seats at the top of the steep road.

– Chef Paul

LutheranCookbook

My cookbook, Eat Me: 169 Fun Recipes From All Over the World,  and my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, are available in paperpack
or Kindle on amazon.com

The cookbook is also available as an e-book on Nook

or on my website-where you can get a signed copy at: www.lordsoffun.com

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Aioli Sauce

French Appetizer

AIOLI SAUCE

INGREDIENTSAioliSauce-

4 garlic cloves
4 egg yolks (possibly 1 more)
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon white pepper
1 cup extra virgin olive oil (1 additional cup later)
2½ teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon warm water (possibly ½ teaspoon more later)
1 cup extra virgin olive oil

SPECIAL UTENSILS

mortar and pestle or garlic press

Makes 2 cups. Takes 15 minutes.

PREPARATION

Peel garlic cloves. Crush garlic cloves with mortar and pestle or garlic press. Add egg yolks, crushed garlic, salt, and pepper to mixing bowl. Blend gently with whisk. Slowly add in 1 cup olive oil, whisking gently, but constantly. There should only be a thin drizzle of olive oil going into the mixing bowl. This process should take minutes. If you hurry the olive oil, you’ll just end up with a liquidy something. Then you’ll wander aimlessly in the nearby woods shouting, “Why? Why?” over and over again.

Add lemon juice and warm water, whisking constantly. Slowly add in remaining 1 cup olive oil, whisking gently and constantly until the oil gets absorbed and mixture is slightly thinner than mayonnaise. If aioli sauce curdles or separates, add 1 egg yolk and ½ tablespoon warm water into second mixing bowl. Beat with whisk. Gradually add curdled or separated sauce to beaten egg in second bowl. Mix gently with whisk. This sauce goes well with chicken proscuitto sandwiches, turkey sandwiches, raw vegetables, and fish.

TIDBITS

1) The Beatles were Britain’s greatest rock-and-roll band. They came to America in 1964 to star on The Ed Sullivan Show. But The Cinq Escargots, France’s greatest rock-and-roll band, had been Mr. Sullivan’s first choice. And why not? These jaunty musicians had electrified Gallic crowds with Je Voudrais un Oeuf and had made all the mademoiselles swoon with the ballad, Farine du Blé.

2) The Cinq Escargots didn’t trust American cooking. They brought their own snails. The snails got loose and stampeded the crowd. The show got cancelled. The Beatles replaced them and became famous. The disgraced Cinq Escargots flew back to France and became mimes.

– Chef Paul

4novels

My cookbook, Eat Me: 169 Fun Recipes From All Over the World,  and novels are available in paperpack or Kindle on amazon.com

As an e-book on Nook

or on my website-where you can get a signed copy at: www.lordsoffun.com

Categories: history, humor, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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