SIMPLE S & P CHICKEN, ZUCCHINI STEAKS, AND GARLIC LEMON POTATOES AU GRATIN
Ingredients (or something like that):
Chicken breasts; extremely large zucchini; potatoes; heavy cream; cheese that melts nicely; garlic; olive oil; lemon oil; salt & pepper; dried basil
Yesterday I cleaned the refrigerator, and, much to my dismay, discovered that we don’t have much food in the house right now. Going to the grocery store was not an option, seeing as how it was 4:30pm, and everyone would be getting off work and doing just that. I did not want to be part of the masses. So, I worked with that I could find, and ended up with an extremely delicious meal, that left both me and my husband wishing I made more.
I began by defrosting the chicken breasts, then slicing them “long-way” in half. I sprinkled with salt and pepper, placed in an air-tight container with water, more salt, and lemon oil. This was at about 4:30pm, and I was planning on serving dinner around 6:30pm… So leave about 2 hours to brine your chicken. The reason that I cut the breasts in half is simple: they will cook quicker, and, when you cut a bite out of them, you get the perfect piece, not a giant chuck o’ chicken that you have to cut yet again.
Immediately after my chicken is in the ice box chillin’ (hahaha), I begin on my potatoes. I get out the mandolin (slice them like normal people do if you don’t have one) (I just like to play with mine when I get the opportunity), and go to work on 3 Golden potatoes. I would use Yukon golds, or something similar because, well, their flavor is just better than others. So, I slice up those 3 potatoes, and place them in a bowl with water and a little lemon oil to hangout until it’s time to stick them in the oven.
5:45pm rolls around and it’s time to get the ball rolling for dinner. I gather my items needed to complete this meal on time: big pan, little pan, sauce pan, meatloaf pan without the bottom piece; lemon oil, garlic, dried basil, salt and pepper, heavy cream, melty-cheese… And then I go to work. I begin by taking the meatloaf pan and spraying it with PAM. If I felt like being frisky, I probably would have covered it in butter, but alas, I did not. I layered the potatoes on one another working down the pan, and covering the previous slice by about half. Continue to do this until the slices are gone, or, until you’re happy with it! Once the potatoes are layered up, sprinkle with dried basil, smashed garlic cloves (to each their own on the amount you do), and salt and pepper. On the stove in your sauce pan, bring cream to a simmer and slowly mix in cheese. I used grated parmesan and added a little ground black pepper. Whisk slowly until the cheese is completely melted in, then pour over potatoes. Top with more cheese and toss (gently) into the oven at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.
At 6:15pm I take my zucchini steaks (giant, I know), lightly salt and pepper them, drizzle in a little lemon oil, and place them in a low-heat olive oil covered pan. At the same time (or close to), I take my brined chicken breasts and place them in the other pan, also lightly covered in olive oil. I flip things accordingly until about 6:25pm, when I take out the perfectly done potatoes and let them rest while I finish the chicken. At this time, the zucchini can come off the stove, and be placed on a paper towel. They’ve got so much moisture in them, and now they have oil on them, I just wanted something to soak up a little bit of all that. Take your plate and serve.
Somethin’ outta nothin’.