Friday, November 5, 2010

Dinner and Movie

I have to say, I admire my parents' style of entertaining. Back in the day, they'd have friends in for fabulous dinner parties. The next morning, while my parents and their guests were still in bed, I would pad through the living room and dining room in my jammies surveying the damage. Empty bottles of wine were lined up along the mantle; small plates holding uneaten chocolate bonbons waited on the table (fine, maybe I stole a few for breakfast). So where was I whilst all the merry-making took place? My parents hired the best babysitter money can buy - Fred Astaire (actually, he was totally free). Since TV watching was a rare treat, and eating in front of the TV, absolutely verboten, my Saturday night dinner and a movie set-up was just about the biggest treat I could imagine. My father would make me a special pasta dinner and set me up with an old musical and I'd be in heaven. It became such a tradition for me that when I was old enough to babysit on weekends instead of stay home I really missed my special movie time.

Start out with Swing Time, one of my favorite Astaire-Rogers films, and another classic, chicken with shells. And while this very first dinner and a movie post is perfect for occupying small children so that you can have an evening to yourself on the cheap, stay tuned. I'm planning on featuring some of my favorite movies and meals that would perfect accompaniments, because even though I'm a grown-up now I still love settling down to a delicious dinner in front of a terrific film.

serves 2

1 large breast of chicken
6 slices bacon
1 C frozen peas
1/2 lb shells
1/2 C chicken stock
1/4 C - 1/2 C cream
2 T butter
1 T olive oil
1/4 C Parmigiano-Reggiano

Chop the bacon into medium sized squares. Cook in a skillet for 5-7 minutes or until crisp. Set aside. Then raise the heat to high and add your tablespoon of olive oil. Sear for 2 minutes per side, then add the 1/2 C of stock and reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for about 5 minutes or until cooked through. When it's done remove it from the pan and let it stand for a few minutes so the juices don't all run out when you cut it. After it has rested cut it into bite sized pieces. Cook the shells according to the package directions. When they're done drain them quite thoroughly. Make sure to shake them a bit to get the water out. Then melt 2 T of butter over them and mix gently to coat. Cook off half the chicken broth, then add 1 C of frozen peas and cook them for 3 minutes. Add the 1/4 C of cream and the chicken to the broth and peas. Add the shells and 1/4 C parm. Add the bacon. Mix gently and serve.

1 comment:

JMLC/StellaCarolyn said...

mmm. bacon. I actually have something a bit similar on my menu this week. I'll report back.


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