Grilled Lemon Basil Chicken
Note: If you can't find lemon basil, regular basil will work just fine. Adapted by Bill Ward.
• 6 (4 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of excess fat
• 1 tsp. grated lemon peel
• 1/4 c. fresh lemon juice
• 1/4 c. white wine
• 2 tsp. minced fresh garlic
• 1/4 tsp. salt
•2 tbsp. olive oil
• 1/2 c. loosely packed fresh lemon basil leaves, plus more for garnish (see Note)
• Lemon wedges, for garnish
Lightly pound chicken to an even 3/4-inch thickness. Pat chicken dry using paper towels and place in a large resealable plastic bag.
Combine lemon peel, lemon juice, wine, garlic, salt, oil and lemon basil in a blender or food processor. Pulse for 30 seconds or until well blended.
Pour the marinade over the chicken, seal the bag and turn to coat chicken thoroughly. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes to overnight.
Preheat grill to medium-high heat, or about 400 degrees.
Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade. Grill for 4 to 6 minutes per side or until cooked through.
Garnish with additional basil and squeeze lemon wedges over chicken for extra lemon flavor.
Lemon-Olive Oil Cake With Honey-Roasted Rhubarb
• 1 c. sugar
• 1 c. water
• 1/4 c. lemon verbena (or other lemon herbs)
• 3 eggs
• 2 c. sugar
• 1 1/2 c. extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 1/2 cups milk
• Grated zest of 3 lemons
• 2 c. flour
• 1 tsp. baking powder
• Large pinch of salt
• 6 stalks rhubarb (see Note)
• 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
• 1/3 c. honey
To prepare the syrup: Combine sugar, water and lemon verbena in a saucepan and heat, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Let sit for a couple of minutes, then strain out leaves.
To prepare the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 12-inch cake pan.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar. Add olive oil, milk and lemon zest. In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the dry ingredients and slowly add the egg mixture, stirring just until blended. Do not overmix.
Pour the batter in the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Let the cake cool completely before loosening sides with a knife, and inverting onto a serving plate. Poke a few holes in the top of the cake with a fork and drizzle the cake with the syrup.
To prepare the topping: While the cake is baking, slice the rhubarb stalks into half-inch pieces. Toss with a few tablespoons of olive oil, arrange onto a sheet pan and drizzle with the honey. Roast at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or so. It should be tender but hold its shape. Let cool and spoon over slices of olive-oil cake.
Lemon-Thyme Butter Sauce
Makes about 2 cups.
Note: Use to baste scallops, shrimp, fish, chicken, potatoes or any grilled vegetables. Adapted by Bill Ward.
• 2 sprigs of lemon thyme, plus 1 tsp. chopped
• 1 1/2 c. white wine
• 1 shallot, sliced
• 12 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
• Fleur de sel and fresh ground pepper
In a sauté pan reduce the white wine, shallots and lemon thyme sprigs on medium heat. Remove the shallots and thyme toward the end. Slowly whisk in the butter. Stir in the chopped lemon thyme. Season with salt and pepper.