Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Dukkah-Crusted Chicken Scaloppine with Warm Carrot-Raisin Salad and Scallion Cream

Collaboration - The act or process of collaborating.  A product resulting of collaboration.

My favorite part of blogging is the interaction with talented cooks.  I am not talking about comments on a blog post but to actually interrelate and exchange ideas.  Whether it's gmail or facebook, the ability to talk food is an everyday joy.  I am tremendously fortunate to be able to call Natasha from 5 Star Foodie Culinary Adventures a friend.

Natasha is a creative, generous and talented cook. She is very quick to exchange ideas and share her knowledge base. My favorite part of her attitude towards the kitchen is that she is fearless. She has an imaginative and extensive palate that allows her to cook with many diverse ingredients.

Our post was totally thought up by her.  I am a much better cook for it.  My guess is that you will see many more collaborative efforts between us.

Catch my end of this deal on 5 Star Foodie. I made an ancient Egyptian ingredient inspired pizza called Cleopatra’s Dream.

Enjoy...

I am very excited to visit here today as a part of a collaboration project that Lazaro and I have been working on together. In addition to being one of the most amazing cooks in the blogosphere, Lazaro is also a wonderful friend. He always has an encouraging word to say, and he really helped me to get through my recent blogging blues.

This dish is actually the very first one that I made after a long gourmet cooking break, and it is part of our joint guest post with the theme of Egyptian-inspired flavors. Lazaro has created an amazing pizza worthy of Queen Cleopatra herself that you can check out back on my site. Meanwhile, I made a Dukkah-Crusted Chicken Scaloppine served with Warm Carrot-Raisin Salad and topped with Scallion Cream, and it is my privilege to share it with the readers of Lazaro Cooks! today.



Dukkah, also spelled duqqa or dukka, is a popular Egyptian spice mix, consisting typically of various seeds, spices, and nuts. This spice mix is used in cooking, but also is used as a topping for bread dipped in olive oil. There are many different variations of dukkah, and I created my own spice mix that was very aromatic, and added terrific flavors to the chicken scaloppine.



Ingredients:

dukkah
1/4 cup coriander seeds
2 tablespoons cumin seeds
2 tablespoons white sesame seeds
2 tablespoons black sesame seeds
1/2 cup almonds, thinly sliced
1/2 cup hazelnuts, chopped
1 teaspoon dried mint flakes
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

chicken
1 whole boneless chicken breast
Extra-virgin olive oil
Butter

carrot-raisin salad
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup onions, finely chopped
2 cups carrots, shredded
1 cup raisins
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
Pinch of salt, pepper to taste

scallion cream
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 scallions, chopped
Pinch of salt, pepper to taste

Directions:

dukkah
In a dry skillet without oil, toast coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and sesame seeds. Place in a food processor. Then, toast the almonds and hazelnuts, mixing gently until golden brown. Add to the seed mixture. Also, in the food processor place mint flakes, sea salt, and crushed red pepper flakes. Pulse to mix well. The mixture needs to be still coarse, dry, and crumbly but fine enough that all of the seeds are crushed. (can be made in advance and stored in an air-tight container; use leftover dukkah as a dip for flatbread, first dipped in oil).

chicken

Cut the breast into halves and then slice each half into thin scaloppine in half. Pound the scaloppine lightly on both sides. Brush with a little oil and sprinkle generously with dukkah spice mix on both sides. Let the chicken sit for a few minutes.

In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil and 1 tablespoon butter. When the butter melts, add the chicken scaloppine and saute for about 2 minutes per side (in batches if necessary, then add additional oil and butter for each new batch).

carrot-raisin salad

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet. Add onions and cook for a minute until the onions start to soften. Add the rest of the butter and cardamom and mix well. When the butter melts, add carrots and raisins. Cook for about 5 minutes on medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

scallion cream
In a food processor, combine sour cream, lemon juice, scallions and salt and pepper to taste. Blend until the sauce is smooth and foamy.

to assemble

Place a chicken scaloppine on top of carrot-raisin salad and spoon scallion cream sauce all over.

28 comments:

  1. Wonderful Natasha, exotic combination of flavors in a dish that I would love to make myself! This looks like it could become a favorite, thanks for both inspiring and sharing:)

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  2. Hey Lazaro,

    Hot diggity! (sorry, kiddies were watching Mickey Mouse all day and I have that in my head right now) Two of my favorite bloggers guest posting for each other! I feel like I just hit the blogging jackpot! I love that you described Natasha as having a fearless attitude towards the kitchen. You couldn't have described her better in one sentence. I am always amazed with ALL her dishes.

    Natasha,

    Your dishes exude mastery in the kitchen in every aspect. You always know how to catch a reader's attention with beautifully presented dishes right off the start. Upon reading the ingredients, we fall further in love with your dishes as you work your magic in choosing the perfect combination of ingredients. This dish has it all, presentation, flavors, texture, and creativity. Needless to say, this sounds divine! Bravo, my dear!

    Thank you to the both of you for sharing your talents with us every week!


    Your dishes

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  3. This looks so completely fabulous!!! Can't go wrong with crusted chicken! Looking forward to more collaborations!:)

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  4. Thank you for always sharing the most delicious ideas for us Laz....wishing you a memorable meal and time with your family on Thanksgiving! Anita

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  5. WOW!! Amazing. I love the look of your blog. Very nice. The chicken looks very appetizing and moist. Thanks for sharing :)

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  6. Dukah is a fun ingredient just because there are so many versions and you can put your stamp on the flavors... nothing is written in stone. Delicious recipe and I love the way you and Lazaro riffed off one another.... a whole lotta love and creative energy flowing there!

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  7. You never fail to amaze me Lazaro! This is just fabulous!

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  8. I agree Laz, my fav part of blogging thus far has been meeting new peeps! I feel as tho some of them should be on my Christmas list! I love your blog to bits for instance for your creative, delicious yet doable recipes, not to mention your spunk! ;)
    Natasha, this is just the coolest recipe, so many flavours that I love and the pairing with the carrot-raisin salad is genious! Genious I say!
    I only recently have heard about Dukkah from Anja's Food for Thought. She lives in the Middle East and only recently 'discovered' it herself then shared it on her blog. The spices are my fav hands down and I can't wait to get some hazelnuts and give this a try!

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  9. I just learned so much from the two of you. this collaboration project is a beautful thing, as are the foods created in keeping with the egyptian theme. The dish looks wonderful Natasha.

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  10. I love the carrot and raisin salad. This dish is so well-balanced. The dukkah crust sounds incredibly flavorful--definitely a switch from other typical breadings. Going over to check out Lazaro's dish now!

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  11. First I have to echo Lazaro's words about Natasha...she is amazing and defintely one of the most talented bloggers I have had the pleasure of getting to know. I love the collaboration you two came up with! This dish is incredible and I can just imagine the amazing flavor that the dukkah gives. By the way, your recipe for dukkah looks amazing, I will definitely be trying that!

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  12. The chicken looks delicious with all the yummie spices on it...great paired with the carrot raising salad...perfect meal :-)

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  13. Wow. Simple and yet so refined, it's truly a dish fit for a Queen! I love the spiced chicken, the warm carrot salad, and the fresh scallion cream, it's all so perfect together! The colors are lovely and I can only imagine how great this tastes! Great guest post!

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  14. Thanks for sharing this elegant and exotic dish with us, Natasha. Ras el Hanout is one of my favorite spices - I don't believe that I've ever had the pleasure of tasting a dukkah spice mix, but including seeds and nuts adds a texture and crunch that I would love! Look forward to your future collaborations with Lazaro :)

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  15. Wow guys you two have come up with some great ideas- I was excited when she told me you would be doing something together! I want a plate of this right now for my dinner- hmmm, can I do this in two hours Yikes, not sure!

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  16. Oh and Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

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  17. Wow Natasha! This is fantastic! I have most of those ingredients in my cupboard, but never would have thought to use them in this way! Thanks for de-mystifying Egyptian flavors and inspiring me to try something new from my spice cupboard! Over to your site to see the Pizza!

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  18. That's a great joint post! Egytian theme realy wow me.

    Natasha, I agree with your word about Lazaro. Thanks for introducing me to Dukkah. I never cook with it and probaby don't know how. All I can see from your dish is hella sexy! I like your plating and the scallion sauce sounds delicious with the chicken.

    I'm going to Lazaro's dish now!

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  19. OmGod , this is absolutely delish!!
    TOtally bookmarked and a must try:-)
    Gng to make this one sooonnnn!!
    Love the spice mix!

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  20. Fabulously presented as usual and the spice is outstanding nice job!!! Happy Turkey Day soon!

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  21. A wonderful dish Natasha! Such mastery in combining flavours and executing technique. A superb representation of modern, Middle Eastern fusion cuisine!!!

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  22. Lázaro this look wonderful and yummy, I love it! x gloria

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  23. Hi Natasha, the choice of flavors in your dukkah is perfect and I love that the spices and nuts are toasted. The balance of textures and flavors here is delightful. Beautiful balance and presentation.
    Natasha and Lazaro, I have been looking forward to this collaboration. Will jump over to see the other half now.
    To both of you; I hope you and your families have a wonderful Thanksgiving :)

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  24. Natasha! This is an incredible learning experience for me! I really appreciate the explanation that accompanies the recipe as I am not at all familiar with Egyptian food - but you know it is on the top of my list of places to travel next. We were to go this past summer, but decided to wait until I retire so we can really enjoy being there when it is not so hot. I cannot wait to try this recipe! I am almost jumping out of my seat.
    :)
    Valerie

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  25. PS - I love the collaboration idea between the two of you. I have initiated a lot of that with my local blogging and food loving friends here, in Edmonton, but what a wonderful idea to do via the blogosphere, as well. That is definitely why I am here. To learn and to be challenged.
    :)
    Valerie

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  26. Hey Lazaro,

    I just wanted to drop by and wish you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving. I'm not sure if you celebrate it, but if not then I hope you're having a nice relaxing day spent with your loved ones. Until next time, Mohawk Dude :-)

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  27. What I like the most outside of meeting new people is the exchange of ideas and the fact that I have learned so much and still learning thanks to you and your guests.

    I am dying to try this mixture of herbs...so aromatic

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  28. I love Dukkah. Its been awhile since I had this in my favorite Resto. Since some of the nuts werent available here in the Philippines, cant make an authentic one. But the one we had before had Pistachios too. Why didnt I think of making it as a crust. Well done!

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