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Posts Tagged ‘basil’

Chicken Sandwich with Sauteed Basil

In Chicken, Sandwiches on November 11, 2011 at 4:29 pm

SO sweet and delicious...and check out that phosphorus content!


Omigod. Don’t you just want to take a huge bite out of that picture? I can still taste the sandwich right now. Possibly because it’s been a couple of hours since I’ve eaten (starving!), but more likely because it was just that good.

My thing about this sandwich is the basil. We’ve all used basil as a seasoning and a garnish, but have you ever just cooked it as a vegetable? Thought not.

And what about balsamic glaze? Oooohhh yeah. Not the homemade kind, either. I’m usually all about the making-from-scratch, but not when it comes to balsamic glaze. See, when you make it at home, it usually just involves reducing regular balsamic vinegar. Not only does it produce fumes that will stink up your house and make your eyes water like your cat just died, but you miss out on the true flavor.

See, real balsamic glaze is the result of reduced balsamic vinegar, yes, but also grape concentrate. The end product has just the right balance of sweet and tart that your tastebuds will  start squirting saliva before it even gets to your mouth. Even if you don’t like balsamic vinegar, you’ll like balsamic glaze. Promise.

Then you combine the glaze and basil with tender, moist grilled chicken and a thick, juicy slice of tomato, and you’re in heaven. So why don’t I shut up and just tell you how to make the darn thing? It couldn’t be easier.

Makes two sandwiches:
Pound 2 chicken breasts to even thickness, and rub with salt, pepper, dried basil and oregano.

Sear them on high, then reduce heat to medium until they are cooked through. Do this on a grill instead of in a pan for extra yum.

While that’s happening, saute 2 handfuls of fresh basil over low heat with a tablespoon of olive oil and 1 clove of pressed garlic. Just keep swishing everything around until the leaves are wilted and tender.

Put the finished chicken on buns (because raw chicken would be gross, and I already told you to cook them. keep up.), and  divide the basil equally between the two sandwiches. Top each sandwich with a thick slice of tomato, and drizzle with a tablespoon of balsamic glaze.

See? Simple. Easy. Not easy peasy, because I loathe that term. Unless you’re three years old — then it’s cute. If you have the ability to speak clearly, please don’t ever say “easy peasy”. I would have to ban you from polite society. Thank you.


Nutrition Facts
Amount Per Serving


Total Fat
4.2 g

Saturated Fat
1.0 g

Polyunsaturated Fat
1.2 g

Monounsaturated Fat
1.0 g

136.9 mg

310.4 mg

700.1 mg

Total Carbohydrate
16.2 g

Dietary Fiber
1.1 g

0.5 g

57.6 g

Vitamin A
8.8 %

Vitamin B-12
14.9 %

Vitamin B-6
66.5 %

Vitamin C
9.6 %

Vitamin D
0.0 %

Vitamin E
2.5 %

6.2 %

8.6 %

10.7 %

16.0 %

20.0 %

13.3 %

139.0 %

Pantothenic Acid
21.1 %

49.9 %

19.2 %

76.1 %

21.0 %

14.8 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.


Coconut Lime Shrimp

In Seafood on June 14, 2010 at 11:16 am
coconut lime shrimp

Better than a restaurant!

So, okay. I was grocery shopping at a store that I normally don’t go to, and they had whole coconuts for $1.50. Really? I seem to remember them being like, five bucks. I guess there’s a coconut surplus. Anyway, I love coconut, so I bought one without any clear idea as to what I was going to do with it.

I got it home, where it sat on the kitchen counter for a few days until I caved and decided to break it. The breaking actually went pretty uneventfully, and I was able to separate it from the shell without a problem, which never happens. I even peeled it alright. Then I grabbed a chunk to chew on, threw the rest in a bag, and stuck it in the fridge where it remained for about a week. I simply forgot it was there.

One day, I opened the fridge and wondered what the heck was taking up so much room – aha! – the coconut. What in the world am I going to do with it? So, believe it or not, I got out the peeler and actually shaved my own coconut. Really. Mr. Gorrilla’s dad was here, and he couldn’t believe it. Neither could I. I mean, really. But I figured I would be more likely to use it up that way, and I was right. It wasn’t two days before I was grinding it up to make coconut shrimp because I love it and it’s easy and delicious. Right? Right. Try it – you can use pre-shredded coconut though.

Coconut Shrimp


1/2 pound shrimp, peeled/deveined

juice of 1 lime

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup flour

1 egg, beaten

2 cups GROUND coconut (run the shredded coconut through the food processor)

1 tablespoon bread crumbs

1/4 cup canola oil

1/2 red bell pepper sliced thin

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 can coconut milk

dash fish sauce

2 tablespoons brown sugar

red curry powder to taste

2 tablespoons chopped basil, several whole basil leaves


Combine shrimp, lime juice, salt, and pepper. Set aside for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large pan, saute the pepper and onion for about 5 minutes, keeping everything moving.

Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, brown sugar, and curry powder, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.

In a separate pan, (yeah, this is a two-frying-pan meal), heat oil for shallow frying over medium-high heat.

Drain the shrimp. Combine the coconut and breadcrumbs in a bowl (the breadcrumbs help the coconut stick better).

Dredge each shrimp in flour, then dip in egg, then roll in coconut. Drop the shrimp in the oil and fry until golden, about 3 minutes. Work individually, and don’t crowd the pan. I said don’t! Drain the shrimp on paper towels until they are all done.

By this point, your sauce should be nice and thick. Stir in the basil. Now you can taste it, but try not to melt where you stand. We don’t need a puddle of cook all over the kitchen floor.

Spoon the sauce over rice, and place the shrimp decoratively over the sauce. Now, isn’t that lovely?

Burgers Parmesan!

In Beef, Sandwiches on March 3, 2010 at 4:50 pm

These burgers have a surprise inside!

Oooooh! A surprise? Yes! A surprise! Cheese! Inside the actual burger! Yes, it is possible, and no, it’s not illegal. There is cheese inside of, on top of, and underneath the burger. Cheeesy goodness. I know. This one is definitely NOT low-calorie, folks.

It is my holy combination of Chicken Parmesan and Cheeseburgers. A Burger Parm. So freakin’ good, it doesn’t even need a side dish. And no ordinary hamburger bun can stand up to it, either – you need to use ciabatta squares. Not only are they firm enough, but they have all those nice big air pockets to hold the sauce. I got mine at Target, believe it or not – they actually have a pretty decent little bakery there.

A note about the beef – I know everyone instinctively buys the leanest ground beef they can find, but you don’t want to do that when it comes to burgers. You just end up with a dry burger. It might work out okay for this particular recipe because of the tomato sauce, but in general, stick with 80/20. It’s jucier, and it’s cheaper. If you want to eat low-fat, don’t eat a cheeseburger, especially one with three slices of mozzarella cheese. Just sayin’.

Burgers Parmesan

(makes two giant burgers)


1 pound ground beef

1 cup spaghetti sauce

3 tablespoons parmesan

6 slices fresh mozzarella

2 individual ciabatta squares

a few fresh basil leaves


In a large bowl, mix the beef, 1/3 cup spaghetti sauce, and the parmesan cheese. Don’t mix it too much – just until combined. Divide into fourths.

Flatten each portion into a THIN patty. Place a slice of mozzarella each on top of two of the patties, then top with the other two patties. Like a sandwich, kind of. Pinch the edges together, and generally refine the shape into a burger-like one. Refrigerate for about an hour. Go watch that show you taped last night.

Now, heat a large (because the burgers are large) pan over medium-high heat, and preheat your oven to 425.

When the oven beeps, put the ciabatta squares inside, and turn it OFF. They will be perfectly toasted when you take them out, I promise.

By now your pan should be hot, so cook your burgers to desired doneness. Remember – they look thick, but some of that is cheese, so don’t over cook them. Mine took about ten minutes, flipping halfway through.

Remove the burgers from the heat and set aside. Remove the Ciabatta from the oven. Now run your hands under cold water because you didn’t use an oven mitt.

Slice the ciabatta squares in half. Spread two tablespoons of sauce on the bottom half, top with a slice of mozzarella, add the burger, put two more tablespoons of sauce on top, add another slice of mozz, and a few basil leaves. Now put the top of the bun on.

Stand back and admire your work, but try not to drool on the floor. Just take a bite. Try not to wear a white shirt. You’ll see.

Surprise! omg....