Sunday, October 09, 2005

Tagged! Prunes, they're what's for dinner

There's a weird phenomenon called "tagging" in the blogosphere (a pretty strange place in its own right) in which one blogger "tags" another. A tag means that you have to find the 5th line of your 23rd post and extrapulate something interesting from there.

Since I don't want to be a spoil-sport, I'm responding to a recent tag. My 23rd post, 5th line reads,

"But prune juice also has high levels of acrylamide, and black olives and wheat toast."

That bit of hard-hitting journalism was written in response to a Times article about the high-levels of cancer causing acrylamide found in fried potato products, like fries and chips. On another vaguely related note, I made one of my favorite fall dinners the other night, and it contains both prunes and olives. It's a nice, simple braise from the very important book "All About Braising" by Molly Stevens. If you don't already own this cookbook, you should certainly go out and buy it. The recipe is simple---you dredge some skin-on chicken pieces (I cut up a whole chicken, though you could use all thighs and legs) in flour, heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a dutch oven, brown the chicken pieces then transfer them to a platter. Pour any accumulated fat out of the dutch oven and add a cup of white wine, 1/4 cup of white wine vinegar, a crushed clove of garlic, a nice strip of lemon zest, two cloves, 1/3 cup pitted green olives and 2/3 cup pitted prunes. Return the chicken pieces to the pot, cover, and let the whole thing simmer gently on medium heat for about 35 minutes, until the chicken is tender. Serve over mashed potatoes or egg noodles.

Worth the acrylamide.

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