The first sign of rain began at 5am when I began my day. The sun was just starting to come out of its blanket. Still dark, I made my journey out of my front door to my car. The air was thick, and there were little drops of rain trickling from the sky. By the time I arrived to work, the rain had steadily progressed and was now to the point where I had to jog from my car, head down, to the front door of the coffee shop I work in. As time went on, the rain grew stronger, and the guests seemed nonexistent. The few who braved the weather came in with disbelief, cursing the weather. I felt the need to defend the rain, making statements of, “Isn’t this weather wonderful?! I hope it rains all day!” Unfortunately, it did not.. but it sure did the next day…
It is not often that it rains here in Southern California. I have lived here for about six years now, and when it rains I get overly enthusiastic. I pull on my boots, throw on a jacket, wrap on a scarf and find a reason to go outside. Usually it is just to go on a nice stroll around the neighborhood.
On a rainy day, you just should not go outside unless responsibilities require you to. For me, I love to stay inside, catch up on TV shows, read a book, and especially cook. I don’t know if it is the weather, but food tastes even more delectable on rainy days. Bring on the soups, stews, and oozy warm desserts. These next few recipes are what I had for my rainy day.
Stove Cooked Chicken
Ryan isn’t a big fan of chicken, so I know that when he enjoys a chicken dish, he is being genuine. This is the best recipe thus far, which originally generated from the wonderful cookbook Seasons. Hopefully there will be more to come.
1 Whole Young Chicken
4 tablespoons Olive Oil
6-8 shallots (peeled)
1 Whole head of garlic (halved)
2 cups of Dry White Wine
1 cup Chicken stock
Aprox 3-4 tbsp. Tarragon Leaves (chopped)
Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.
Remove giblets from chicken and insert lemon halves into the cavity. Rub the chicken with 2 Tbsp Olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining oil in large pot. Put in garlic and shallots, sautéing until golden colored. Remove from pot and place on a side dish. Put chicken in pot breast-side down, cooking for about 5-6 mins until golden. Flip chicken and cook for another 5-6 mins. Add in cooked garlic, shallots, wine, and stock. Bring the sauce to a boil and cover pot. Cook for 15 mins. After 15 mins, remove the lid, lower heat, and simmer for another 15-20 mins. Add in tarragon. Remove chicken from pot, and place on a roasting pan. Drizzle some sauce on top of chicken and place in oven for 8-10 mins until skin has crisped. Serve chicken with sauce on the side.
The Best Potatoes
Another big hit with Ryan were these potatoes. It is my sworn duty to help him expand his taste for food, so this is why his approval is important. These potatoes pair amazingly with the chicken sauce. It literally melts in your mouth.
5 medium Idaho Potatoes, peeled
5 tbsp. Butter (please use REAL butter)
1 Onion, halved and thinly sliced
Salt and Pepper, to taste
Pre-heat oven to 450.
Place potatoes in pot, covering with cold water. Season generously with salt. Bring water to a boil for 10-12 mins. Meanwhile, slice the onion. When potatoes are done, drain and let cool for 10 mins. Slice potatoes about 1/4 inch thick. Heat a large skillet with half the butter. Saute potatoes until golden. Remove from heat and place on a side dish. Heat remaining butter. Add in onions, sautéing until golden, then add in potatoes, making sure to combine well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Place mixture on baking pan. Roast in oven for 10 mins. Serve as a side with chicken (try drizzling some sauce on top as well, I promise you will fall in love).