Thursday, June 25, 2009

Grilled Chicken Breasts with Spiced Yogurt

Do as I say, not as I do!

Do as I say, not as I do!

"Don't cry for me I'm in Argentina." - adapted for Gov. Mark Sanford, (R-SC) from the play Evita.

Just when the dog days of summer were about to start, a gift from the political gods. Yesterday, after a 7-day "hiking trip", Gov. Mark Sanford (R-SC) admitted to the world that he was having an affair with an Argentine "friend". Now crablings, I've heard it called a lot of things, but never a "hiking trip”; and face it, Argentina is one long hike.

The conservative politician tearfully admitted the error of his ways. A staunch advocate of “family values”, he apparently got into trouble by valuing someone else’s family a little too much. But, believe it or not, I’m not here to pile on Mark Sanford. It's just that his transgression reminded me of one from many years ago.

No discussion of political affairs involving Argentines (yeah!, like you knew there was more than one), would be complete without at least a brief mention of Rep. Wilbur Mills (D-ARK) and the young Argentine (!) stripper Annabelle Battistella. Of course most of us remember her as "The Argentine Firecracker" Fanne Fox.

In October, 1974 the world was shocked when one-time Presidential candidate Mills was stopped for driving while intoxicated. The drunk, battered and scratched Mills was pulled over by Park Service Police. As he slowed his car, Ms. Fox jumped from the vehicle and dove into the Tidal Basin in an effort to escape.

While it probably seemed like a good idea at the time, Ms. Fox was quickly apprehended and the media frenzy was on. But unlike today’s politicians, Wilbur Mills didn’t shy away from being seen with his paramour, if anything he seemed to revel in being photographed with young Fanne. Ultimately Mills would be forced to resign, and Fox’s stripping career briefly “took off”.

Now that's a scandal! No crocodile tears shed at staged press conferences. No pained expressions on suffering spouses. Sex and booze, booze and sex. Drunk Congressmen and swimming South American strippers, that's what I'm talking about! The new guys are amateurs.

Do as I say, not as I do!

Well, we obviously need something spicy to go with this story. This news story broke so quickly that I don't have an Argentine recipe ready, so here's the best I have in inventory. Grilled Chicken Breasts with Spiced Yogurt has a Indian/Middle Eastern feel to it. The original recipe produced a very spicy result so the recipe you see here has been toned down a bit. Please enjoy...

Grilled Chicken Breast with Spiced Yogurt

Inspired by CDKitchen with some major tweaks by Crabby

2 cups plain yogurt

4 TBSP Olive Oil

2 ½ TBSP fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons salt

½ TBSP chile powder

31/2 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon ground coriander

½ teaspoon ground black pepper

¼ teaspoon cinnamon

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, pounded flat

1 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped

1 ½ TBSP minced shallots

Whisk together 1 cup of the yogurt with the olive oil, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, salt, chili powder, cumin, coriander, pepper and cinnamon.

Place the chicken in a re-sealable plastic bag. Pour the yogurt marinade on top and massage into the chicken breasts. Refrigerate at least 20 minutes and preferably 8 hours.

Thirty minutes before cooking, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Pre-heat your grill over medium-high heat.

Remove chicken from the re-sealable bag and discard the marinade.

In a small bowl mix the1 cup of plain yogurt with the remaining 1 ½ tablespoons of lemon juice. Set aside.

Grill the chicken breasts until cooked through, turning once. Depending on the thickness of the breasts, total cook time should be between 8 and 14 minutes.

While the chicken is grilling, toss together the chopped mint, shallots and remaining 1 ½ tablespoons of olive oil.

Remove the chicken from the grill, drizzle with the yogurt sauce and top with the mint-shallot salad.

Alrighty crablings, that's all for now. Remember to keep an eye on those politicians, you can tell they're lying whenever you see their lips moving. Until next time, remember, you can do it, you can cook.

1 comment:

WineWizardBob said...

In keeping with the topic, you could serve an unique, or is it a unique, dry white wine from Argentina, Torrontes. Think dry Muscat from Alsace. A fruit gloppy aroma and flavor in a crisp dry white wine. Really fools you in that is smells sweet but tastes dry. And it will work with this dish.