Summer eating

Summer is now officially here.  Samantha is out of school, swim team practice is underway and I’m looking for dinners that are quick to fix and light.  Last night we had grilled chicken in one of my favorite marinades.  The good news is that there is leftover marinade in the fridge (and leftover chicken for some spicy chicken salad tomorrow.) I’m thinking grilled chipotle shrimp next week.  Here is the recipe.

Chipotle marinade 

  • 2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 TB tomato juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce (low sodium soy sauce)
  • 2 TB sherry vinegar
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in a blender.  NOTE: Marinade keeps well in refrigerator.  Spray bone in chicken breasts with Pam and then grill for 5 minutes over direct heat with the meat side down and then 15 – 20 minutes over indirect heat, flipped over (varies a bit based on the size of the chicken).  He then covered it with aluminum foil and let it rest.

We were going to have grilled asparagus but the produce stand was sold out.  They did have squash so I sautéed it in olive oil with some fresh herbs from my garden.  Delicious!

Chipotle grilled chicken and sautéed squash

Chipotle grilled chicken and sautéed squash

Tonight we had sesame shrimp salad.  Warning – this one is spicy!

Sesame shrimp salad

  • 1 TB sugar
  • 3 limes, juiced
  • 1 TB water
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 TB orange marmalade
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 5 jumbo shrimp per person (peeled and deveined)
  • Napa cabbage, chopped
  • 1 bunch watercress
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint leaves
  • 1 TB sesame seeds

Combine sugar, juice of 2 limes, water and garlic in a small pan.  Cook over low heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat and stir in 1 tsp chili garlic sauce and fish sauce.

Wash and dry greens and combine in a large bowl with carrot and sesame seeds.  Toss with dressing mixture (sugar/lime syrup with chili garlic and fish sauce) and divide between plates.

Combine juice of remaining lime, remaining chili garlic sauce, marmalade and 1 tsp of oil in a bowl and whisk.  Toss shrimp in bowl and stir to coat well.  Marinate for at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour.

Heat remaining tsp oil in a nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Add shrimp and marinade and cook 3 – 5 minutes until shrimp are pink and glazed.   Divide shrimp and glaze between salad plates.  Serve.

Spicy shrimp salad

Spicy shrimp salad

Chicken and polenta

I decided to use the leftover chipotle marinade from last week’s flank steak on chicken breasts for tonight.  Keith grilled the chicken and I bought extra so I’ll use the leftover chicken on Thursday.  (I put chicken wraps on the original menu plan but am now thinking I might make chipotle chicken salad – we’ll see what I think by Thursday.  I wanted something as a side that would provide nice balance with the spicy chipotle flavor.  I haven’t made our favorite polenta in a while so I went with that.

Rosemary polenta

  • 2 TB butter
  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp minced rosemary
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 4 TB grated Parmesan cheese

Melt butter and olive oil.  Add garlic, red pepper flakes and rosemary and saute for 1 minute.  Add milk and chicken stock and boil.  Add cornmeal and whisk, stirring over low heat.  Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan cheese.

Grilled chipotle chicken and polenta

Grilled chipotle chicken and polenta

Chipotle grilled chicken and zucchini fritters

We played golf today so I wanted a very easy dinner.  Fortunately I had chipotle marinade in the fridge and a zucchini from my very own garden for more zucchini fritters.  Here is the chipotle marinade – it is good on any protein.  We made extra chicken breasts for leftovers on Tuesday.

Chipotle marinade 

  • 2 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 TB tomato juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce (low sodium soy sauce)
  • 2 TB sherry vinegar
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in a blender.  NOTE: Marinade keeps well in refrigerator.  Keith sprayed the marinated chicken with Pam and then grilled about 3 minutes a side over direct heat and about 4 -5 minutes over indirect heat.  He then covered it with aluminum foil and let it rest while I made the zucchini fritters.

Zucchini fritters
  • 2 zucchini grated with a coarse grater
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • olive oil
Combine zucchini with garlic, scallions, Parmesan, eggs, lemon zest and flour.  Heat a heavy saute pan over medium heat and add olive oil.  Plop zucchini mixture into hot oil by tablespoons and cook 2 -3 minutes per side until crisp.  Remove to a plate covered in paper towels and serve hot.  Great with chipotle mayonnaise or green goddess dressing.