Kentucky Bibb Lettuce Salad with Bourbon Vinaigrette

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Bibb lettuce is named for its original cultivator, John Bibb. In 1865 he grew his special Bibb lettuce in Kentucky’s alkaline soil. This variety, also called limestone, would become the first American gourmet lettuce. Bibb lettuce varieties are known for tolerating varied soils and heat and resisting blight during summer months, making them a choice lettuce for home gardeners. Not only does tender Bibb lettuce comes from Kentucky,  but  so does the best Bourbon whisky, both coming together in a perfect combination of Southern flavors that is fits nicely on the menu for a Kentucky Derby brunch.

 

Serves 4 to 6

Ingredients:
8 chicken breast skins
1 1/2 cups pecan halves and pieces
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
3 Tablespoons light brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
8 cups torn Bibb lettuce (2 to 3 medium heads)
4 cups trimmed watercress
4 large peaches, pitted and sliced
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
4 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

For the Bourbon Vinaigrette:
Makes 1 1/4 cups
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
3 Tablespoons Woodford Reserve Bourbon
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2/3 cup canola oil

Directions:
For the Chicken Skins:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Pat chicken skins dry.Bake skins on parchment paper-lined sheet pan for 15 minutes.Remove from the oven to cool.Crumble the skins into medium -sized bits and set aside.

For the Pecans:
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Toss pecans in butter. Stir together brown sugar and red pepper in a bowl; add pecans, tossing to coat. Spread pecans in a single layer in a lightly greased aluminum foil-lined shallow pan. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until lightly browned, toasted, and fragrant. Remove from oven.Cool in pan on a wire rack 20 minutes; separate pecans with a fork and set aside.

For the Bourbon Vinaigrette:
Whisk together vinegar, brown sugar, bourbon, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Add canola oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth.Set aside.

For the Salad:
Gently combine the watercress, peaches,red onion slices and pecans in a large bowl.

To serve, place several Bibb leaves on a salad plate. Place the peach mixture on top of leaves. Sprinkle the crumbled cheese and chicken skins bits on top of the peach mixture and lightly drizzle with the vinaigrette.

 

TODAY.com Parenting Team FC Contributor

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Chicken Roquefort with Whisky Sauce

Adapted from Deliceline by Celine, 2013

 

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Serves 2

Ingredients:
2  Boneless chicken breasts
1 package of Roquefort  or Gorgonzola cheese
2 Tablespoons unsalted  butter
1 Tablespoon whisky (Bushmills Irish Whisky was used)
4  Slices of serrano ham
Salt, to  taste
Ground black pepper, to taste

 

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Using a paring knife, create a small pocket in each chicken breast. Season inside with salt and pepper.

in a medium bowl, mash the butter, Roquefort and whisky into a paste.

Take half of the cheese mixture and gently stuff  one of the chicken breasts.

Lay two slices of the serrano ham flat on the counter, making sure they over lap. Roll the chicken breast in the ham and secure with kitchen twine.

Repeat with the remaining chicken breast, cheese mixture, and ham.

Season the bundles with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat and brown chicken breast on all sides, untl golden brown. Transfer to a parchment covered baking sheet.

Deglaze the skillet  with whisky and let the sauce reduce Pour the sauce over the chicken bundles and roast for 20-30 minutes, basting occasionally. To check for doneness, insert a  thermometer inserted into the chicken and it should reads 170°F.

Transfer the chicken breast to a cutting board and let stand 10 minutes. Slice each roast in half or in medallions.

This dish is best served as a main course with a  green salad and risotto.

 

TODAY.com Parenting Team FC Contributor


Cranachan

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Cranachan is a traditional Scottish dessert made  of oats, cream, whisky and raspberries. Many Scots still use the name “crowdie cream” because, in the past, a soft Scottish cheese called crowdie was used in the place of cream. A single malt Scotch make all the difference in this  delicious alternative to  a trifle.

 

Serves 2

 
 

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons of oatmeal
10 1/2 ounces fresh raspberries*
1 cup  heavy cream
2 Tablespoons good quality honey
2 Tablespoons single malt whisky*

 

Directions:

Place the oatmeal in a cool, dry pan and turn on the heat to simmer. Stirring occasionally, toast the oatmeal until it is golden brown. This process could take between 10 to 20 minutes. Once the oatmeal is toasted to a golden brown color, turn off the heat and let it cool in the pan.

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Place the cream in a bowl and whisk up until soft and relatively thick.  Add the honey and single malt whisky and fold it in with a whisk, until it is soft and creamy.

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Pick out some of the best raspberries for decoration and add three or four to the bottom of each serving glass,reserving a few for garnishing. Add the rest of the raspberries to the cream mixture and fold in carefully, breaking up a few of the raspberries to obtain a slight pink coloring to the cream.

Adding the Raspberries Mixing Together
Spoon the mixture into the serving glasses, then add cream to the top to make an even base for the oatmeal. Using a teaspoon, evenly sprinkle the oatmeal over the dessert. Add a raspberry for the finishing touch and chill for about three hours, or overnight in the refrigerator.
 

 
To serve the dessert, remove from the refrigerator and  top it off with a raspberry. Cranachan can be served on its own, or with cream and more raspberries.

The Final Touch

 

 

*Cook’s Notes:

The single malt scotch used in this recipe was Macallan 12 year old scotch. You can also use bourbon or rum in place of the scotch.

Strawberries can substituted for the raspberries.

 

TODAY.com Parenting Team FC Contributor