Tag Archives: chutney

Chopped Challenge Thursday: Mozzarella, Thyme, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Rhubarb

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto

It’s that time of the week again, time for “Chopped Challenge Thursday”!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risottoThis week the first four responses came from Miss Muffet Bond (yes, my Mom!) with Mozzarella, Amanda Kamermayer with Thyme, Liz Ragland with Sun Dried Tomatoes and technically the fourth came from DeAndre Matthews with Kumquats.  Unfortunately kumquats don’t come into season until November, so I had to go with my number five response from Amy Black with Rhubarb.

I had already decided on a Kumquat Thyme Chicken with Sun Dried Tomato and Mozzarella Risotto when Rhubarb came into my life.  Now what? I decided to stick with the plan yet replace the kumquat with lemon and top the chicken with the rhubarb.  I cooked the rhubarb in red wine vinegar, brown sugar and lemon to give it a sweet, tart and acidic bite on top of the chicken.  The result ended up being so delicious, I was actually glad I was thrown that Rhubarb curve ball in the last hour!

The final result of “Chopped Challenge Thursday” Week Two: Lemon Thyme Chicken topped with a Rhubarb Date Chutney on a bed of Sun Dried Tomato Mozzarella Risotto

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto, recipe, food, Italian


Lemon Thyme Chicken

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lemon (juiced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 2 large chicken breasts

Rhubarb Date Chutney

  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 lb rhubarb (sliced thin)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1/2 cup dates (pitted and chopped)

Sun Dried Tomato Mozzarella Risotto

  • 1 onion (chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 cups arborio rice
  • 6-7 cups chicken stock
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese (shredded)
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil (chopped)

Start by making the marinade for the chicken.  Combine the first 6 ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Pour over the chicken in a large Ziploc bag or shallow dish.

Marinade, Lemon, Thyme, Chicken, Olive Oil, GarlicCoat well then place in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes.  Next, begin making the chutney.

Start by bringing the red wine vinegar, water and brown sugar to a simmer.  Next, add the rhubarb.

Red Wine, Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Rhubarb, ChutneySimmer for 8-10 minutes or until the rhubarb has softened.  Next, mix in the chopped dates, lemon juice and thyme sprigs.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Red Wine Vinegar, Brown Sugar, Lemon, Thyme, Date, Rhubarb, Chutney, RecipeNow, it’s time to throw that chicken on the grill! The grill should be heated to medium and chicken should be cooked 10-12 minutes per side.

Chicken, Grilling, Recipe, Lemon, Thyme, Olive oil, lemon juice, garlicWhile the chicken is grilling, it’s time to get going on the risotto.

Start by bringing the chicken stock to a boil in a large sauce pan.  On the next burner heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook down for 5-7 minutes.

onions, olive oil, garlic, chicken stock, risotto, recipe

Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Next, add the rice and cook for 1-2 minutes.

onion, rice, risotto, garlic, olive oil, recipeNow start adding the chicken stock in one ladle at a time.

risotto, rice, chicken stock, how to, recipe, garlic, olive oilAs soon as the rice has absorbed all of the liquid, add another ladle of chicken stock.  Continue this process for the next 15-20 minutes or until the rice is soft and the risotto is creamy. Continue stirring throughout the process so that the rice does not stick to the bottom of the pan and burn.

Don’t be scared of risotto, it’s not hard to make, it just takes some love and attention (like me, hehe!)

Taste the risotto as you go, if you run out of chicken stock and it still isn’t to your creamy, delicious standards, don’t fret, just add water to the boiling pot and ladle that in until the risotto is perfect. You will know,  I did a little happy dance when I tasted mine and it was perfect!

Also, don’t forget about the chicken on the grill while making the risotto.  It only needs to be flipped once, so I give you permission to leave the risotto unattended for 60 seconds to flip the chicken!

To finish the risotto add in the salt, pepper, cheeses, sun-dried tomatoes and basil.

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risottoStir to combine well.

At this time the chicken should have those perfect grill marks and be ready to go.

Chicken, Lemon, Thyme, Garlic, Olive Oil, Grill, Recipe, Food

Plate up the dish by placing the risotto on the side or under the chicken breast, then spoon the sauce from the chutney over the chicken, it gives it an amazing juiciness.  Next, place the chutney on top of the chicken and serve!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto

I’m loving the results of these Chopped Challenges, I could definitely eat this dish over and over again!

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto, recipeIf rhubarb is out of season or not available in your area, tart apples can be substituted.

lemon, thyme, chicken, rhubarb, date, chutney, red wine vinegar, sun dried tomato, garlic, mozzarella, parmesan, risotto♣ Vegetarian Option: Use vegetarian chicken breast substitutes and vegetable stock instead of chicken stock.

♦ Gluten Free Option: Since rice is naturally gluten-free, so is risotto, that makes this entire recipe gluten-free!

Seared Duck Breast with a Balsamic Burgundy Reduction and Raspberry Chutney

Duck, Breast, Presentation, Raspberry, Chutney, Balsamic, Reduction

After a long summer of living out of a suitcase I am so happy to be settled in my new home in San Diego! With my new home came my beautiful new kitchen and all of my lovely kitchen gadgets which have been collecting dust in my storage unit all summer!

After unpacking (and cleaning off all that dust!) I was so excited to cook my first meal in my new kitchen!  What, oh what, would it be? I knew it had to be something new and fabulous as I was cooking for my ever-so-amazing movers (i.e. my guy friends with big muscles!) After watching Masterchef on demand all summer I was inspired to cook duck for the first time. I thought about getting real crazy and buying a whole duck, butchering it, confiting the legs and searing the breasts, but then I decided to take it one step at a time and just purchase the breasts for searing.

Luckily for me, my lovely new neighborhood in the Little Italy district of San Diego has a market just two blocks from my home which sells beautiful duck breasts. If your local grocery store does not sell them, try a meat market or specialty grocery store near you.

I decided to rub the duck breast with lavender. This rub was inspired by my morning purchase of lavender and honey goat cheese at the farmers market. Many people use rosemary or thyme when cooking duck and since lavender is close to that family of  herbs, I figured why not try something new!

Ingredients, Duck, Breast, List, Seasonings, Spices, Lavendar, Kosher Salt,


  • 2 duck breasts (app 1/2 lb each or less in weight)
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp lavender
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic (crushed)
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup burgundy (or red) cooking wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock ( I made my own with one cube chicken bouillon)
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 cup raspberries

Start by combining the salt, black pepper and lavender with a mortar and pestle to release all of the flavors.

Mortar, Pestle,Seasonings, Spices, Lavendar, Kosher Salt, Black Pepper, Rub, Duck

Rub the duck breast down on both sides with the mixture.

Duck, Breast, Rub, Salt, Pepper, Lavender, Recipe

Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes while you heat the olive oil in an oven-safe pan or skillet.

Add the garlic to the olive oil and sauté for 30 seconds.  Next add the duck breast, skin side down.

How to, Sear, Searing, Duck, Breast, Garlic, Olive Oil

Cook for 5 minutes or until the skin starts to lightly brown, then flip and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Next move the duck into an oven pre-heated to 375° and cook for an additional 5 minutes in the oven.

Remove from the oven and place the duck in a separate pan.

Duck, Breasts, Rub, Lavender, Seasoning, Spice, Recipe

Cover with foil and allow to rest.  Use the pan juices from the duck breast to make your reduction and raspberry chutney.

Start by adding the red wine and balsamic vinegar to the pan over medium-high heat.  Allow to reduce to almost half, then add the chicken stock. Reduce by half again, then add the honey and brown sugar. Mix well, then lastly add the raspberries.

Reduction, Sauce, Balsamic, Vinegar, Burgundy, Red, Wine, Raspberry

Crush the raspberries into the reduction.  Allow to cook for 3-4 minutes then drain with a mesh strainer.  This will separate the chutney from the reduction.

Return the duck breast to the pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side to bring some heat back to the duck.

Place the duck on a plate and glaze with the reduction, then top with the raspberry chutney.

Dinner, Recipe, Duck, Breast, Seared, Raspberry, Reduction

Packed with flavor, this was a dish I was definitely proud to serve my “movers”!

duck breast, balsamic, burgundy, reduction, raspberry, chutney

♦ Gluten Free Option: This recipe is gluten-free.