I tend to follow recipes, albeit vaguely. I always adjust them to make my taste buds happy, but I still use them as an outline or for inspiration to create something of my own.
When I purchased what might possibly be the most beautiful habanero ever at the Farmers Market I wanted to make something special. Typically I use fresh habaneros for jerk chicken or salsa de molcajete, but I was in the mood to stuff some chicken breasts. I also wanted to maintain some control of the habanero’s spiciness so I chose to make a sauce for the chicken. I worked with ingredients that I knew I had on hand, which was great because I didn’t have to hit the grocery store on a weeknight. I’m so happy that I went with my instincts because the meal was seriously good.
When I came up with the idea I typed these notes and sent them to myself from work (ahem … on my lunch break):
Grilled Chicken Breast Stuffed with Mushrooms and Topped with Habanero Chimichurri, Served on a Bed of Arugula
Cook mushrooms in olive oil with garlic, salt & pepper. Cut a pocket into each chicken breast. Stuff with mushrooms and secure with soaked toothpicks. Brush chicken with olive oil and season with salt & pepper. Grill until cooked through – approximately ten minutes. Top with Habanero Chimichurri – parsley, habanero, oregano, garlic cloves, olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt & pepper. Serve over bed of arugula.
Grilled Asparagus Wrapped in Prosciutto
Coat asparagus with olive oil, salt & pepper. Grill asparagus. Wrap with prosciutto.
Fresh Tomatoes & Cucumber Stacks with Goat Cheese
Slice tomatoes and cucumbers. Scatter chopped garlic over tomato slices and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt & pepper and let sit for 15 minutes. Place a cucumber slice between two slices of tomatoes. Top with goat cheese.
I did make some changes once I got home and started cooking. I added a little dry sherry to the mushrooms when they cooked and I only added half of the habanero to the chimichurri. I also topped the tomato and cucumber stacks with thin slices of habanero.
This picture was taken before the Habanero Chimichurri Sauce was added and we never got another shot before all of the food went into our our happy bellies.