As I've been playing SGOTW, I've been looking more closely at my collection of cookbooks. I've already told you that I'm not a big collector of cookbooks - I have about 26 and 4 of those are simply Cooking Light annuals. As I leaf through these cookbooks, I've come to realize that part of the problem is that I simply have not made good choices - I need to really LOOK before I shell out the money for something that often ends up sitting on the shelf collecting dust.
However, I have also happily found that I need to crack open my Rachael Ray cookbook - 356: No Repeats - more often. Whatever I think about her perky personality or her apparent overexposure, I've come to realize that I really like her style of cooking. Her style is casual but hip and updated - a little funky without being stuffy or pretentious. Kind of like the food you'd expect to find at a really good micro-brewery or upscale tavern.
With so many tasty recipes to choose from, it was hard to pick something, but I settled on a grilled chicken recipe. It was fantastic. Lots of fresh, summery flavors with a nice heat from the chicken marinade. The marinade was so good that I would definitely try it on its own. The recipe calls for marinating the chicken for just 10 minutes, but I ended up marinating for about 2 hours - I wanted to get everything ready to go so that we could enjoy a little relaxing time on the deck before dinner.
Although the list of ingredients is pretty long, this recipe really does come together fairly quickly. I don't know how often I actually come in at 30 minutes for Rachael's recipes, but this recipe could come in pretty close if you're an efficient chopper (which I'm not). Uncharacteristically, I decided that I would NOT skip the cilantro and give it a try. I'm glad I did. I'm still not a big cilantro fan, but I'm warming up to it ever so slightly and it was not at all overwhelming in this dish. I also made sure to use fresh herbs as called for - there is no way dried herbs would work in a dish like this.
The recipe makes a lot more salad than will fit in 4 pita pockets - it makes enough for at least 6, if not 8 pita pockets - but I was more than happy to have the leftovers and look forward to eating them for lunch today. Speaking of leftovers.......I skipped the red leaf lettuce and even if I did use it, I would not put it into the salad, but place it in the pita seperately - the lettuce would not hold up well at all if you want to have good leftovers the next day.
I look forward to making better use of my Rachael Ray cookbook and who knows, maybe I'll even buy one or two more. But there are so many to choose from - I count about 10 or 11 on Amazon - so I'd have to take some time and browse at the bookstore...............