Posted by: dinainsuburbia | November 18, 2008

Food Network week days 4 and 5: Giada and Tyler!

Yikes- I’m so behind on my food network week posts.  I guess this is a blogging lesson- don’t announce to the blogosphere that you are doing something if you can’t follow it through.


Friday, I made Giada De Laurentiis’ chicken florentine style.  This recipe did not disappoint  The chicken was moist and flavorful.  I pounded it slightly so as to speed up the cooking process.  The sauce was creamy and rich, but I could only think how much MORE delicious it would be with some sauteed mushrooms or maybe some artichoke hearts.  Next time I’m going to add one of them and make a little more sauce.  The sauce was SO good that we finished up all the sauce before the chicken!

I went ahead and made the two boxes of spinach.  Maybe next time I’ll go ahead and saute some fresh spinach instead.



  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour, for dredging
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 (10-ounce) packages frozen cut-leaf spinach, thawed, drained


Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour to coat lightly. Shake off any excess flour. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until brown, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep it warm.


Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and saute until the shallots are translucent, stirring to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet, about 1 minute. Add the wine. Increase the heat to medium-high and boil until the liquid is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the cream and boil until the sauce reduces by half, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Stir in the parsley. Season the sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and any accumulated juices to the sauce, and turn the chicken to coat in the sauce.

Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in another large skillet over medium heat. Add the spinach and saute until heated through. Season the spinach, to taste, with salt and pepper. Arrange the spinach over a platter. Place the chicken atop the spinach. Pour the sauce over and serve.

On to Tyler Florence’s Ultimate salt & pepper salmon.  Was it ultimate?  Um- I’m not sure.  I was too frazzled.. trying to get out of the house and get to RCIA.  I made the side dish with it- smashed new potatoes with peas, pearl onions and lemons- which I think derailed me.  I just didn’t THINK about how long it would take to boil the potatoes for smashing (duh).  The recipe calls for salmon with skin on, mine didn’t have it.  Because of this, I thought the salmon was a little dry, although my husband really liked it.  I couldn’t finish mine- which is a RARE to be sure!  I’m going to try this again with the appropriate salmon from the local fish store instead of using a frozen, supermarket purchased, filet.  However, the smashed potatoes were AWESOME and I will totally be putting them into the side dish rotation (I didn’t add the watercress, but next time I will- but it was totally good without it).


  • 1 salmon fillet (about 2 pounds), skin on, 1 1/2 to 2 inches thick
  • Kosher salt
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Smashed New Potatoes with Peas, Lemon, and Pearl Onions, recipe follows


Run your finger up and down the center of the salmon feeling for any pin bones. Remove any that you find with a needle-nosed pliers or tweezers. With a sharp knife cutting across the width of the salmon, divide it into 4 equal portions. Lightly salt the salmon and let sit a couple minutes; this will help you get crispy skin.

Heat a 2-count, about 2 tablespoons, of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the oil is almost smoking. Season the salmon with pepper, and rub about 1 1/2 tablespoons butter on the skin side of each fillet. Add the salmon to the pan, skin-side down. To get super crispy skin, cook the salmon almost to completion, about 6 minutes.

Flip the salmon and cook until flesh side is nicely seared, 1 to 2 minutes.

Transfer the salmon to a platter and serve with the Smashed Potatoes.


Smashed New Potatoes with Peas, Lemon, and Pearl Onions:


1 1/2 to 2 pounds red bliss potatoes

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 (10-ounce) box frozen pearl onions, defrosted

Pinch sugar

Splash freshly squeezed lemon juice

5 slices lemon

2 (10-ounce) boxes frozen peas, defrosted

1 lemon, zested

Kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper

1/4 cup roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley

2 heaping tablespoons roughly chopped fresh dill

1 bunch watercress, stems trimmed just above the rubber band

Put the potatoes into a large pot, cover them with cold water, and add a large pinch of salt. If they’re large, cut them in half. Bring to a boil and simmer until the potatoes are fork tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Drain. Stick a fork into the potatoes, 1 at a time, lift them out of the colander and peel with a paring knife. Toss the potatoes into a bowl and roughly crush them. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil with the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the butter melts. Add the pearl onions, sugar, and lemon juice and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are browned, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the lemon slices, peas, and lemon zest and continue cooking until the peas are hot. Season with salt and pepper. Dump the vegetables over the potatoes in the bowl, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil add the parsley and dill and taste for salt and pepper. Scatter the watercress over the top, fold it in just until it wilts and call it a day.



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