What I had for dinner on Friday, February 10, 2012

We are sort of considering doing a Blog Project. You know like Julie Julia or Global Table Adventure, who is cooking a meal each week from a different country, in alphabetical order. I am kind of obsessed with that blog right now, actually, and so for dinner we had Jordanian-inspired spiced grilled chicken.

To make the marinade/paste, put into your food processor 2 bay leaves, half an onion, and one teaspoon each of cumin, cinnamon, coriander, pepper, and paprika. Also add 1-2 tablespoons of salt. Grind it all up until it’s a nice paste. Add olive oil until it’s a consistency you like.

I made a double batch and slathered about 2/3 of it all over a parted-out homegrown chicken. (On another note, I learned I’m getting better at parting out chickens; it took me only about five minutes. It used to take me like twenty. Someday it’ll take me like two if that.) I let the chicken marinate in the fridge for about five hours.

Sasha, the Global Table Adventure blogger, served this chicken with a bulgur and lentil pilaf. I had already been thinking of trying to make a grain salad fit this meal so I went with that. Except the only flavor I really took from it was the caramelized onions. I opened a bag of sautéed Laughing Crow onions from the freezer and let them cook down further until nicely caramelized.

I went out to pick up some stuff for dinner

In the meantime I chopped a couple of small homegrown beets, one large homegrown carrot, and a few market-bought parsnips into approximately equal sizes, and tossed them with another generous spoonful of the spice paste, well thinned with olive oil. I roasted them at 375°, I believe, until they were done, and set them and the onions aside.

I texted G. to ask what we should have for green and he was like “I dunno, frozen peas??” so in the interest of making it 1) vaguely related, location-wise, and 2) not just, you know, reheated frozen peas, I tossed them with chopped fresh homegrown mint, some diced homegrown goat feta, and a couple of overwintered homegrown scallions. Added a drizzle of olive oil and a dash of apple cider vinegar.

Homemade homegrown goat feta, homegrown mint, storebought peas (with invisible homegrown green onion)

Then I went out to the pub to hang out with a customer/friend who wants to get chickens and had questions about chicken tractors.

When I got back, I put a cup of farro on to cook. When it was done (about 20 minutes I think) I drained it and added the root veggies and the onions, and another small dollop of the spice paste for good measure. G. put the chicken on the grill and kept an eye on it until it was done.

This meal was extremely delicious. We are now huge fans of the Jordanian spice paste and want to put it on everything. It went particularly nicely with the root veggies, as the sweetness of the carrots complemented the sweetness of the onion and bay, and the cinnamon-y parsnip flavor was matched with the actual cinnamon in the paste.

2 comments to What I had for dinner on Friday, February 10, 2012

  • Andi

    This sounds ridiculously delicious.

  • lauren

    It was SO GOOD. The paste/marinade (calling it a paste seems so … undelicious) was amazing. I could see using it on veggies on the grill or in a stir fry, or on tofu, or way thinned out with some not-too-sweet apple cider vinegar as a dressing, or pretty much anything. A dollop of it in with beans as they cook, perhaps.

    (I asked G. if he thought it would be tasty with beans, and he got all thoughtful and then said “yeah, I just reinvented the bean-based veggie burger in my mind.”)

    We use cumin and coriander together a lot, but the addition of the cinnamon makes it a totally different thing.

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